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Thursday, 16 August 2018

The western press discovers Sahel just in time for the Eid break

The western press (or at least the LA Times) has discovered the bacchanalia that is the Sahel scene just in time for the Eid break. The widening gap between the haves and have-nots in Egypt is particularly evident in Sahel, where “a proliferation of upper-crust watering holes with the rapid development of ever-newer, posher resorts” juxtaposes ordinary citizens’ struggle to make ends meet due to the rising prices, Rachel Scheier writes for the Los Angeles Times. “If economic shocks…have plunged almost a third of this country’s 95 mn people into poverty, you wouldn’t know it in Sahel, where fashionable nightspots are packed with recent graduates of Western universities decked out in Ibiza- and Miami Beach-inspired ensembles.”

The LA Times is also the latest outlet to take a kick at the relationship between Egypt’s human rights record and US aid, suggesting that “the failure of two administrations to sustain pressure on Sisi’s government despite worsening repression on civil society suggests that American national security interests supersede human rights concerns.”

Also circulating this morning is a BBC Newsday report suggesting there are security concerns as Egypt prepares to lift its six-year ban on fans in the stands for football matches.

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