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Sunday, 29 December 2019

Egypt in the news on 29 December 2019

Topping coverage on Egypt in the foreign press this morning: Two separate road accidents on a Port Said highway and Zaafarana that killed a total of 28 people, including Indian and Malaysian tourists, are bringing plenty of attention to the state of Egypt’s roads. (Associated Press | The National | AFP | Deutsche Presse Agentur | Arab News)

Egypt is racing against Ethiopia to export its surplus electricity within Africa: Egypt is ready to export 20% of its surplus electricity to African countries at half the average cost of electricity production and wants to start the process before Ethiopia can begin exporting electricity generated by the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) to neighboring countries, Al Monitor reports. This accords with the country’s strategic goals of serving as a regional energy hub and promoting economic integration in Africa.

But two challenges remain: the current lack of transmission lines with other African countries and the ongoing conflict with Ethiopia, whose dam risks exacerbating Egypt’s water shortages and whose own aspirations to generate and export electricity may threaten to derail Egypt’s.

Other headlines worth noting:

  • Egyptian comedian arrested, allegedly over YouTube video: US-based Egyptian online comedian Shady Sorour was arrested upon his arrival in Cairo Airport last week because of a YouTube video in which he reportedly criticized President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, AP reports.
  • Young Christians want to see the government enforce civil marriage laws to simplify processes such as marriages, adoptions, divorces, and inheritance settlements, which are currently protracted and complicated when they take place between people of different sects or religious groups, says UK Christian publication the Express.
  • Egypt made USA Today’s “20 of the most dangerous countries for LGBT travelers” at number 20. Number one on the list is Nigeria, followed by Qatar; many other Arab states and African have also made the list.
  • Egypt set a new Guinness World Record for the largest coffee cup mosaic, which uses 7,260 coffee cups to depict King Tutankhamun's famous gold mask, Xinhua reported.

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