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Wednesday, 23 October 2019

Last night’s talk shows for Wednesday, 23 October 2019

It was a reasonably eventful night on the airwaves last night, despite the absence of Lamees El Hadidi, who this week rejoined the country’s cast of talking heads. El Hadidi’s new show, Al Kahera Alaan, airs on Al Hadath TV on Sunday and Monday evenings.

President Abdel Fattah El Sisi’s visit to Sochi to head the two-day Russia-Africa Summit, which kicks off today,stole the limelight. Hona Al Asema’s Reham Ibrahim was among those with a pen, a paper, and a loud mouth (watch, runtime: 1:58).

Will El Sisi bring up the flights? We remain none the wiser about the current state of play in the negotiations to get Russian airlines back to Sharm El Sheikh after hearing from Russian political analyst Leonid Sukainen, who offered precious little political analysis. “We have been anticipating over the recent period the resumption of Russia-Egypt flights [to the Red Sea],” he told Al Hayah Al Youm’s Khaled Abu Bakr in a phone call (watch, runtime: 4:20). Sukainen expects El Sisi to discuss energy, military, and economic cooperation with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The Brits are returning to Sharm: The UK lifted yesterday its four-year ban on direct flights to Sharm El Sheikh, Abu Bakr noted (watch, runtime: 1:51). He spoke to Egyptian Tourism Federation member Ali Ghoneim, who claimed that the UK was persuaded to return by El Sisi’s diplomatic trips around the world. He also said that the “intensive presence of the private sector in international conferences” was also a factor, which in our view is probably the more plausible explanation. We have more in Speed Round, below.

Talking heads pounce on the BBC for interviewing Mohamed Ali: The State Information Service rebuked the BBC after it announced it would broadcast an interview with contractor-turned-exile Mohamed Ali. The report claimed that the BBC has a “history of lack of professionalism and credibility” and slammed its coverage of the 2017 Daesh attack in Giza. The BBC’s ongoing coverage of the Egyptian judiciary was also a bone of contention. Abu Bakr (watch, runtime: 10:25), Masaa DMC’s Ramy Radwan (watch, runtime: 32:21), and Hona Al Asema’s Reham Ibrahim (watch, runtime: 8: 26) all featured lengthy segments slamming the British broadcaster.

Also getting some airtime yesterday:

  • Foreign Ministry response to Ethiopia’s PM: Radwan and Abu Bakr both read out a Foreign Ministry’s response to Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who yesterday hinted at the prospect of war over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (more on this in Speed Round, below).
  • EFA calls off Premier League until U-23 Afcon wraps up: The Egyptian Football Association has put off Premier League games until the Africa U23 Cup of Nations wraps up on 22 November, Yahduth Fi Misr’s Sherif Amer reports (watch, runtime: 0:46). We have the story in this morning’s Sports section.

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