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There is no Darfur peace plan, so ponder this one

Andrew Natsios, America’s special envoy to Sudan, has warned that the Bush administration will resort to an unspecified “Plan B if the Sudanese government does not agree to an expanded international peacekeeping force for Darfur by January 1, 2007. Natsios and other US officials have refused to say what Plan B is. The whisper in …

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Regional interests mean the ceasefire might lead nowhere

Beyond the current Palestinian-Israeli ceasefire there may lie nothing at all: no peace process, not even an interim process or agreement. If that is the case, then the ceasefire itself will not last long. On the Palestinian side, President Mahmoud Abbas appears to have given up on the project of forming a unity government and …

Daily News Egypt

Palestinian Sahar Khalifeh awarded Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature

The American University in Cairo Press announced yesterday Palestinian author Sahar Khalifeh, winner of the Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature for her work Sura wa ayquna wa ahdun qadim (An Image, an Icon, and an Ancient Covenant). The press conference preceding the award ceremony marked the end of a week-long commemoration of Egyptian Nobel Laureate …

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Goals eased the pressure, says victorious Jose

Ahly coach Manuel Jose said his players reeled under pressure in the first-half against Auckland City FC on Sunday but they looked comfortable and produced their normal game when goals came after the interval. The African champions romped to a 2-0 win over the New Zealand side in the opening game of the 2006 FIFA …

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Was Shakespeare an imperialist ethnocentric goon?

Cairo: The works of William Shakespeare have long fascinated readers for their insight into human behavioral patterns and historical perspectives, but one scholar now says that even Islam had a historical presence in the English bard’s writing. Dr Jerry Brotton, Senior Lecturer in Renaissance Studies at Queen Mary, University of London says Shakespeare s works …

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'Resisting America' does not make Russia great

An old saying in politics in Moscow is that relations between the United States and Russia are always better when a Republican rules in the White House. We are statesmen, and the Republicans are statesmen. Because we both believe in power, it is easy for the two of us to understand each other. The problem …

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Gaza security must involve both Israel and Egypt

The recent intensification of violence between Israel and the Palestinians is disturbing in many ways. Most disturbing of all are the signs that new weapons technologies and tactics are being transferred to the Palestinian territories, particularly to the Gaza Strip. Tunnels under the Philadelphi corridor along the Egyptian border with Gaza are among the vehicles …

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Address to mark International Human Rights Day New York City

My dear friends, Thank you all for being here. I could not ask for better company, on the last International Human Rights Day of my time in office, than this group of courageous human rights leaders from around the world. I don’t need to tell you, of all people, that the United Nations has a …

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Make music not war

Is cultural diplomacy the key to international relations? Darryl John Kennedy brought his unique brand of musical diplomacy to Cairo on Friday when he beckoned the small audience at El Sawy Cultural Center on a world jazz tour, featuring themes from Japan, southern Africa, Egypt, the US, and Europe. Kennedy, an “independent cultural ambassador has …

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Political Blogging is fast becoming the media's new frontier

“Blog Me If You Can is a working title of a book I am writing. The idea was born during a moment of clarity as I pondered about the troubled world we endure everyday. My frustration may have been inspired by the usual news bulletins featuring images of dead civilians and soldiers caught between the …

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Killing Lebanon, economically

And so to the latest tented village. That the Rafik Hariri-inspired downtown area should be the field of battle between what must be seen – wittingly or unwittingly – as those who want prosperity and those who wish to obstruct it, is sadly fitting. Say what you want about the late prime minister, he was …

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Containing Iran with Gulf minnows will be tough

With no sign of Iran retreating on its nuclear program and growing acknowledgment of the risks and limitations of military options, the Bush administration appears to be gearing up for a less than optimal policy that it long rejected: Iran’s containment. Its strategy relies on international diplomacy and the threat of sanctions, as well as …

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Washington listens to Arab-Americans, for a change

With the Middle East in turmoil, the State Department convened a two-day meeting for Arab-American leadership recently. Over 100 community leaders from across the United States responded, some traveling great distances at their own expense to participate in the sessions. Eleven State Department officials participated and topics ranged from Iraq, Lebanon and Palestine, to US …

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Football fans to be dazzled by FIFA's Club World Championship

Ahli makes second consecutive showing, hopes for improved game The crowning of the world s best team for the year 2006 will be a hard fought climb to the top for six continental champions in Japan where the third edition of FIFA s Club World Championship will come to its exciting climax on Dec. 17. …

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In the eyes of the downtrodden

Documentary captures the life of a marginalized social segment through her first CAIRO: Cairo’s first Independent Film Festival closed Tuesday with journalist Amal Fawzy’s heartrending tale of simple village folk who have lost the ability to dream of a better life. “Marazik , a 16-minute documentary, was first screened last month at the Press Syndicate …

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Not just a pretty face

Gabrielle Union combines glamour with activism to lobby for better laws to protect women CAIRO: With Shokran ana baheb Misr (Thank you, I love Egypt) American guest star Gabrielle Union broke the ice at a Cairo International Film Festival Conference organized in her honor. Although Union s relatively small roles in mainstream American blockbusters Bad …

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CAIRO CAROUSEL: The life of the Cairo metrosexual

Please. Do not get excited by the headline above. This is neither a column about my sexual preferences nor how stylish I may be. It is not about being bohemian or metropolitan. It is about that long, winding blue and white tube which careens under the smog-infested streets of Cairo and every day carries millions …

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Mubarak warns Beirut protests could lead to "destruction of Lebanon"

PARIS: President Hosni Mubarak said in Paris on Friday that he fears the consequences of the Lebanese opposition protests, calling them unreasonable and warning they could split the nation apart. The President was in the French capital to inaugurate a major exhibition of ancient Egyptian artifacts from underwater excavations and was to hold a working …

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There may be no solution to Iraq war says American journalist Danner

CAIRO: American journalist Mark Danner delivered a sobering assessment of US involvement in Iraq to students and faculty at the American University in Cairo (AUC) Tuesday. Looking around at the intricate mashrabia windows of AUC’s Oriental Hall hosting his lecture, Danner opened by commenting on the beauty of the room, saying “I’m afraid this is …

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Lost and Found in Cairo

CAIRO: The life of a rabbit in reverse. Cairo sunsets. The haunting 1920s music of Na’ima Al-Misriyya. A distressed man wandering through Zurich. In most galleries, these disparate images would never be displayed together. But “Lost and Found exhibits are known for bringing together unusual combinations of images. The show’s Cairo debut at Townhouse on …

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The pluses of uncovering pornography

A Sydney-based Muslim cleric, Sheikh Hilaly, recently made headlines in Australia when he publicly reflected that immodest women invite rape because they are like “uncovered meat. More unfortunate still was his implication that this was the cause of a series of gang rapes in Sydney in 2000, in which the attackers’ legal defense was that …

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Terrorists are criminals, not Muslim activists

CAMBRIDGE, UK: The rise of extremism in the Muslim world has led to the widespread view of Islam as a religion of violence, retribution and war. This is in complete opposition to the truth of our religion and, on behalf of the vast majority of the 1.3 billion Muslims who are ordinary, peace-loving, decent people, …

Daily News Egypt

INTERVIEW: Egypt eyes $5.25 bln from privatization in 2 years

DUBAI: Egypt expects to earn at least LE 30 billion ($5.25 billion) in the next two fiscal years from the sale of state assets, about 50 percent more than in the last two years, the investment minister said on Monday. Egypt should conclude up to 30 privatization transactions by July 2007, including the sale of …

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Egypt PM sees summer referendum on constitution

CAIRO: Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif said on Monday Egypt would hold a referendum next summer on constitutional changes that should pave the way for ending a quarter century of emergency law within 18 months. Nazif said work was under way to amend the constitution to change the power system, encourage political parties and replace an …

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Jitters over the looming Fatah-Hamas showdown

Palestinian politics is approaching the point of no return. The power struggle between the Islamist Hamas and Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas and his secular-nationalist Fatah movement is intensifying, with tensions having manifested themselves in outright combat. Since Hamas was founded in the early 1980s, it has refused to come under the leadership of the Palestinian …

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Palestinian apathy does not mean an end to resistance

I have been observing discussions in Ramallah for some time now, trying to understand what people think about the political situation in general and the Israeli aggression against Palestinians in particular. I have noticed that the majority discusses social and personal issues with minimal reference to political events. On the same day an elderly woman …

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Sometimes science catches up with common sense

Medical prescriptions sometimes come with an instruction to take medicine on a full stomach. Doctors often counsel patients to pay attention to their diet as they recover from illness. It’s common sense. Yet until recently, donor countries have poured billions of dollars into antiretrovirals and other medication to counter the growing impact of AIDS in …

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An ambitious Spanish plan becomes a modest flop

Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero’s set of proposals to break the seemingly interminable impasse in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict seems doomed to failure – but not because there is anything in them that is wholly unreasonable. First, it would appear to be the wrong moment for any real progress to be made, with Israeli …

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