On November 20, a car bomb attack by the Salafi jihadist group Ansar Bayt al Maqdis targeted a convoy of buses transporting Egyptian security personnel in North Sinai. The attack, one of the bloodiest since the overthrow of the Morsi regime in early July, killed 11 Egyptian security personnel and wounded more than 35. In response, Egypt’s army spokesman Ahmed Ali declared that the attack “strengthens our resolve to cleanse Egypt and shield its sons from violence and treacherous terrorism."
December 10 marks Human Rights Day, the 65th anniversary of the landmark Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), signed by 48 nations — with just eight abstentions.
Egypt's post-revolutionary instability has contributed to the demolition of Alexandria's historic districts.
The penthouse of a multi-story, brick high-rise erected close to the city center yields up sweeping views across Alexandria’s historic bay and old town. The apartment on Sultan Husayn Street — a leafy boulevard studded with graceful early 20th century apartment buildings — is guarded 24 hours a day by watchmen. Being the tallest in the area, its balcony affords uninterrupted views across Alexandria’s historic downtown: from the eastern harbor’s Ottoman-era fort to the glitzy hotels and patisseries where the city’s multicultural bourgeoisie once frolicked.
The persecution of Christians is a significant hurdle to peace and prosperity, in the world.
There was a debate in the Commons last week about the persecution and killing of Christians in countries where they are a minority – often a long-established minority. Jim Shannon of the (UK) Democratic Unionist Party, founded by the Rev Ian Paisley, declared that “one hundred thousand Christians will be massacred this year because of their beliefs”.
In December 1933, an air race from Cairo to Alexandria was held. The first plane to cross the finish line was piloted by a 26-year-old woman named Lotfia El Nadi, Egypt’s first female aviator.
To have a flying career was not easy for Lotfia. Her father had rejected the idea, but she did not despair. She persuaded the director of the Institute of Aviation to let her work, free of charge, as his secretary — in exchange for flying lessons. As she later explained, “I learned to fly because I love to be free.”
Bassem Khafagi, Former Community Relations Director of Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and A Founder of Islamic Assembly of North America (IANA) – Who In 2003 Was Convicted In U.S. and Deported – Says In His Presidential Campaign in Egypt: I Pledge To 'Complete Implementation of Islamic Law'
In statements televised on March 12, 2012 on the Egyptian Al-Nas TV, Egyptian presidential candidate Bassem Khafagi said: "[A]s a Muslim Egyptian, I am convinced of [the need to] complete the implementation of Islamic law in Egypt. I do not hide this truth in any way, because it is in keeping with the inclination of the Egyptian people." He added, "As president, I will personally assist in the completion of the correct implementation of the shari'a, by consulting the experts [in Islamic law]."
Khafagi was sentenced in September 2003 in the U.S. to 10 months in prison and deported to Egypt, after pleading guilty to two counts of bank fraud and one count of visa fraud. He had been charged with funneling money to promote terrorist activities through the Islamic Assembly of North America (IANA). At the time of his arrest, Khafagi was also community affairs director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).
According to the FBI, Khafagi was a founding member and former head of the IANA. Federal prosecutors said that the group's objective was the "dissemination of radical Islamic ideology, the purpose of which was indoctrination, recruitment of members and the instigation of acts of violence and terrorism." Federal investigators said the IANA has funneled money to activities supporting terrorism and has published material advocating suicide attacks on the United States. The IANA said it was formed to promote Islam.
Khafagi was one of four former or current students at the University of Idaho at Moscow, ID and at Washington State University at Pullman, WA who were arrested in 2003 during an investigation of a suspected terrorist-related network in the Moscow-Pullman area.
According to school records, Khafagi earned a master's degree in civil engineering in August 1988 at the University of Idaho. After working as a teaching assistant and taking postgraduate classes there, he enrolled at Michigan State University, earning a doctorate in civil engineering in 1993. He later lived in Ann Arbor, Mich., operating a business called International Media Group from his home, court documents showed; according to the documents, it was not clear what kind of business it was.
Following are excerpts from statements by Egyptian presidential candidate Khafagi that aired on Al-Nas TV on March 7, 2012: To view this clip on MEMRI TV, visit http://www.memritv.org/clip/en/3356.htm
MEMRI Special Dispatch No. 4571—Egypt
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