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Sunday, 4 October 2020

Egypt’s talk shows: Saqqara discovery + covid-19 updates lead coverage

*** Lamees El Hadidi returns to the airwaves tonight with her new show, Kelma Akhira, on ON TV. You can catch the promo for the show — which promises to feature plenty of debates and discussion — here (runtime: 1:16).

The talking heads had a rather busy night, but the discovery yesterday of 59 sarcophagi at Saqqara was the belle of the ball. The recently-ratified Banking and Central Bank Act, King Cheeto’s health updates, and the regional diplomatic landscape also earned plenty of airtime.

Aside from yesterday’s findings, work is currently underway to uncover more coffins in the Saqqara Necropolis, Tourism and Antiquities Minister Khaled El Enany told El Hekaya’s Amr Adib. El Enany also made sure to note that the discovery was led by a team of Egyptian archaeologists from the Supreme Council of Antiquities (watch, runtime: 1:23). The minister also touched on Egypt’s efforts to stop the smuggling and sale of artifacts, particularly after Christie’s auction house sold off a Tutankhamun sculpture last year that Egypt said was stolen in the 1970s (watch, runtime: 2:28). Archaeologists believe there are another 1 mn coffins and mummies in the Saqqara Necropolis, Egyptologist Zahi Hawass estimated in a phone-in with Masaa DMC’s Eman El Hosary (watch, runtime: 8:50).

The economic fallout from the pandemic also got some airtime on Al Hayah Al Youm, with former IMF advisor Fakhry El Fiqi noting that Egypt was one of only 18 economies expected to avoid contraction in the IMF’s most recent economic outlook. El Fiqi piled on praise for the Central Bank of Egypt’s quick maneuvering and its monetary policy as a whole for supporting the economy throughout the pandemic. Banque Misr Deputy Chairman Akef El Maghraby also gave Sherdy the lowdown on the key features of the recently passed Banking and Central Bank Act (watch, runtime: 21:33).

We’re not out of the woods yet with the Libyan conflict, as regional powers could still put boots on the ground in Libya despite the recent deescalation Egypt led with the Cairo Declaration, Arab League Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit told Ala Mas’ouleety’s Ahmed Moussa in an extensive interview (watch, runtime: 1:48:51).

The conflicting reports on US President Donald Trump’s health after testing positive for covid-19 were also on Amr Adib’s radar, who had a chat with Al Arabiya’s Washington correspondent Nadia Belbisi. She noted that there is also a bit of confusion on when Trump contracted the virus that causes covid-19, all of which is undermining the White House’s credibility and transparency (watch, runtime: 7:21).

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