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Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Police disperse protesters, several arrested on 25 April as Saudi Shura Council approves demarcation

25 April protests fizzle; security forces used teargas to disperse several hundred protesters in Dokki; handful arrested. Security forces used tear gas yesterday to disperse protesters who were demonstrating against the agreement signed by Egypt and Saudi Arabia on 8 April to return the Red Sea islands Tiran and Sanafir to Saudi Arabia, according to Reuters. A reporter from Ahram Online on the scene said several protesters were arrested, with Bloomberg putting the number at 10. Al Masry Al Youm writes that 23 were arrested in Giza after dispersing demonstrators in Boulaq Al Dakroor. Demonstrators had scattered to Dokki and other areas after security moved “swiftly” on Monday to lock down the original downtown meeting point. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi urged Egyptians on Sunday to stand with authorities to secure state institutions, vowing that efforts by “evil” forces to destabilize the country would fail. “We have paid a high price to get where we are now, and we will not let anyone harm Egypt’s security, stability and institutions,” El-Sisi said in a televised speech. Egypt’s Press Syndicate condemned on Monday what it called "harassment attempts" by "regime supporters" to storm its headquarters, Ahram Online reports. "Some people dressed like central security forces tried to storm the syndicate headquarters," the syndicate said in a statement, adding that the assailants "were let through by police even though all roads around the syndicate were locked down in order to prevent protests." Over the weekend, dozens were arrested ahead of the planned “Egypt is not for sale” protests. The Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, and BBC have coverage in the foreign press.

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia’s Shoura Council unanimously approved on Monday the draft border demarcation agreement signed between Saudi Arabia and Egypt, Ahram Online reports. “Several members of the council spoke to the importance of the agreement in the frame of the "special relationship" between the two countries,” according to the paper.

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