Deena Douara

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Latest by Deena Douara


Blair's efficacy as mideast envoy widely doubted

CAIRO: Press reports claimed that exiting British PM Tony Blair will be formally confirmed as the Middle East Envoy for the Quartet – composed of the European Union, UN, US, and Russia – today in Jerusalem, though at time of press Blair had not confirmed the rumors. In an article for Belfast Times entitled “How …

Deena Douara

Mena education behind, but reformable

CAIRO: The pre-launch workshop for the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) World Bank Flagship Report centered on three key recommendations presented by Ahmad Galal, Managing Director for the Economic Research Forum yesterday at the Four Season’s Giza. First, and where usual emphasis is placed, the “engineering component would need development, including infrastructure, resources, and …

Deena Douara

Celebrating the EU with poetry

CAIRO: As Germany s European Union presidency draws to a close, the Goethe Institute is celebrating with a Long Night of European Poetry. Ambassadors, teachers, and students will be on hand to recite selections of their countries finest works in their mother tongues, followed by Arabic translations of the poems. Egypt and 14 EU countries …

Deena Douara

Israeli Knesset addresses Sudanese refugee problem, says Egypt should absorb them

CAIRO: In honor of World Refugee Day on Wednesday June 20, Israel addressed the increasingly sensitive issue of African refugees flowing into the country from Egypt. Wednesday alone saw the detainment of 63 African asylum-seekers who illegally entered Israel, following a trend that has risen sharply in the past few months with 850 refugees crossing …

Deena Douara

Parliament condemns Rushdie knighthood

CAIRO: The People’s Assembly denounced on Wednesday the recent knighting of controversial writer Salman Rushdie, author of “The Satanic Verses, describing it as a worse error than the publication of the Danish cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed that sparked riots. Sheikh Mahmoud Ashour, former deputy of Al Azhar and member of the Islamic Research Center …

Deena Douara

EU backs Egypt's science, technology with LE 135 mln

CAIRO: The European Union and the Egyptian government signed two agreements worth LE 135 million supporting Egypt’s Research, Development and Innovation initiatives on Monday, at the JW Marriot Mirage City. The agreement was signed during the first Euro-Mediterranean Ministerial Conference on Higher Education and Scientific Research and was attended by ministers and officials from 37 …

Deena Douara

PA postpones decision on cadaveric organ transplants till next session

CAIRO: The People’s Assembly (PA) has decided to postpone the discussion on cadaveric organ transplants until the next parliamentary session, beginning in November. Member of Parliament and Head of the Health Committee Hamdy El-Sayed told The Daily Star Egypt that the PA was “busy with other political laws that made [us] postpone the organ transplant …

Deena Douara

Pre-IGCSE to be introduced in Egypt

CAIRO: The British (International General Certificate of Secondary Education) IGCSE certificate, available in the final three years of high school in Egypt, will be expanded to include potential training and certificates beginning from the elementary level. The Egyptian Ministry of Education has approved the new pre-IGCSE program offered by the University of Cambridge International Examinations …

Deena Douara

Second Cup adds charity to coffee house competition

CAIRO: Second Cup, Canada s largest specialty coffee retailer, will be opening five outlets in Cairo by the end of 2007, with an additional 30 planned by the end of 2009 across Cairo, Hurghada, and Sharm El-Sheikh. The official opening of the first outlet in Mohandiseen will be June 27, with the soft opening this …

Deena Douara

SCI TECH SCENE: Google search trends revealing, surprising, and ironic

Earlier this month Google unveiled a new tool for all those prying list-lovers. The “google trends tool allows a curious user to see which countries, cities, and languages most often search a particular keyword in proportion to their total searches. In this way, US dominance is avoided as the top searcher for all words and …

Deena Douara

Avant-garde visions of a new generation

But is it art? You may find yourself asking this question while perusing the predominantly new media displays at the Townhouse Gallery’s latest exhibition Pick 3. Pick 3 is the third exhibition displaying the best that Helwan University and The American University in Cairo (AUC) students, as well as recent graduates, have to offer, though …

Deena Douara

US Senate considers withdrawing Egypt aid

CAIRO: One week after US President Bush called for the release of opposition leader Ayman Nour, the US House of Representatives on Tuesday advanced legislation aimed at pressuring Egypt to improve its human rights record by withholding some military aid. If passed, the US would withhold $200 million in military aid next year until Egypt …

Deena Douara

World-touring peace cyclist in Egypt

CAIRO: Pushkar Shah’s first dream was to teach in a high school in his small Nepalese village. That was before he decided to cycle through 150 countries, or 390,000 km, spreading the message of peace. He made this decision before he owned his own bike or even knew how to cycle. Before he could fulfill …

Deena Douara

Dancing for the wordly sort

Dana Tai Soon Burgess travels to Pakistan, Bulgaria, and Panama to become a better person and professional. He researches Asian folkloric songs in Peru. He talks about point-to-point harmony. Dana Tai Soon Burgess is a dancer, but one more interested in cultural exchange and taking care of his dancers than in hitting the Euro-American hotspots …

Deena Douara

Tobacco company's anti-youth smoking campaign rebuked by government

CAIRO: British American Tobacco (BAT) plans to kick off a campaign to slow down rampant underage smoking in Egypt. In an effort to present itself as a socially responsible tobacco company, BAT will launch a new Youth Smoking Prevention (YSP) program in early June. Official figures claim smokers under the age of 15 at half …

Deena Douara

Egypt could be 'India of the Middle East'

CAIRO: The Boston-based Yankee Group, an independent technology research and consulting firm, announced this week that Egypt’s growing global outsourcing potential may make it the next India, which currently accounts for 60 percent of global outsourcing. Economic analyst at the Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies Magdy Sobhy told The Daily Star Egypt that …

Deena Douara

Mermaids and crocodiles for your chest

What is Egyptian jewelry? If Khan El-Khalili market is any way to judge, then silver kafs and turquoise eyes are “Egyptian jewelry. But after four thousand years and multiple heritages, do we have anything else to add to the ornamental mix? Artist Ashraf Abd El Kader thinks we most certainly do. My first encounter with …

Deena Douara

System must improve before organ transplant is allowed, say experts

CAIRO: The health community is showing mixed support for the debated fatwa allowing organ transplants from the deceased to the living. Though the issue has been discussed for more than 10 years, it was revived in the People s Assembly (PA) this week with a visit from Grand Mufti Aly Gomaa. One surgeon from a …

Deena Douara

Junk art and all the layers in between

Along the entrance of the current Townhouse Gallery’s exhibit stands a smiling soldier with a bucket for a hat, a foil-wrapped gun, and a striped metallic skirt. Am Sayed, the artist, runs a Downtown liver sandwich stand but says he’s always enjoyed dabbling with arts. His soldier is a symbol of “love for peace, he …

Deena Douara

Ancient Egyptian martial art revived and revisited

The sport is, by some descriptions, a masculine and sometimes bloody martial art. More commonly, however, it is described as a quaint folkloric village dance. It is not a dance, explains Tahteeb trainer Mohamady Fathi. It is an artistic sport. Tahteeb is an authentically Egyptian sport which appears as an unpretentious version of fencing – …

Deena Douara

Football star Thierry Henry promotes Egyptian talents

CAIRO: French Arsenal football champion Thierry Henry was in town for two days to attend Ahly star Walid Salah El Din’s farewell match and to support Pepsi’s School League program. The main purpose of the four-year-old program is to seek talent for the major Egyptian football clubs and enhance the level of play. “Kids are …

Deena Douara

Aboul Gheit calls for criminalizing contempt for religion, scholars react

CAIRO: Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit has called for international criminalization of “contempt for religion at an Islamic Nations conference in Pakistan Tuesday, provoking both support and criticism from Egypt’s religious community. Sheikh Fawzy El Zefzaf, head of the Religions Dialogue Committee at Al Azhar told The Daily Star Egypt that Al Azhar as an …

Deena Douara

World Economic Forum on Middle East to address diversity

CAIRO: The three-day World Economic Forum (WEF) on the Middle East kicked off in the Dead Sea in Jordan on Friday, where Egyptian Minister of Trade and Industry Rachid Mohamed Rachid will be attending along with a number Egyptian businessmen and economists. According to the Arab Competitiveness Report released ahead of the conference last month, …

Deena Douara

EFG-Hermes Foundation donates funds to Menya water project

CAIRO: The EFG-Hermes Foundation donated Thursday LE 650,000 to two projects in Menya governorate, a Habitat Project and a Water and Latrines Project, both to be led under the Better Life Association for Comprehensive Development (BLACD) NGO. The Nazlet Hussein (Habitat) Project aims to repair or construct 1,000 “up-to-code homes via loans of up to …

Deena Douara

Occidentalism mirroring, challenging Orientalism

Harem girls and belly dancers, pashas and pyramids, formulate some icons representing what has come to be known as orientalism. That is to say, the West has for some time reduced complex and varied societies into neat, romantic, stereotyped images. What of the Occident however? Few images can be said to have been repeatedly reproduced …

Deena Douara

Amr Khaled on Time's 100 Most Influential List

CAIRO: Nestled in between Garry Kasparov and Al Gore, Egypt’s own Islamic preacher Amr Khaled was placed in the “Heroes and Pioneers category of Time magazine’s list of the 100 most influential people of the world. The list was unranked. Bio writer Asra Nomani likened Khaled to a “rock star for the Islamic world and …

Deena Douara

Dynamic young architect brings Egypt's past into the present

Looking at the great body of work she has produced, including buildings on AUC’s new campus, award-winning designs, and a bid for the Grand Egyptian Museum, you would never guess that Shahira H. Fahmy, is a young 32-year-old still trying to define her signature style. “When you’re young you’re still trying to establish your own …

Deena Douara

Inter-Arab trade steady at $85 bln, says head of CAEU

CAIRO: Secretary General of the Council for Arab Economic Unity (CAEU) Ahmed Goueli announced at the People’s Assembly last week that inter-Arab trade in 2006 reached $85 billion, similar to 2005 estimates. The figure represents approximately 11 percent of total trade, a modest boost from the 8 percent recorded in past years, though oil trade …

Deena Douara

What Sarkozy's win means for the Middle East

CAIRO: As French citizens cast their vote 53-47 in favour of presidential candidate Nicolas Sarkozy Sunday, they decided not only their own fate, but quite possibly the fate of millions of Arabs and Muslims, both within and outside France. With a large North African Muslim immigrant population, a history of anti-Americanism, and influence within the …

Deena Douara