Saturday,18 August, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1288, (24 - 30 March 2016)
Saturday,18 August, 2018
Issue 1288, (24 - 30 March 2016)

Ahram Weekly


Compiled by Doaa El-Bey

Al-Ahram Weekly

Egypt marked Mother’s Day on Monday by honouring tens of mothers. The stamps show how different world states commemorate Mother’s Day.

Beji Caid Essebsi: Celebrating the 60th anniversary with the people

The first democratically elected Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi marked the 60th anniversary of Tunisian independence this week. In an interview a few days ago, he said, “On Independence Day, I was here... I’m thrilled to celebrate this 60th anniversary, and congratulate my people.”

In his address to the people on that occasion, he stressed the importance of unity to achieve progress. He underlined that Tunisia is facing four kinds of challenges at present, the first of which is combating terrorism. The other three challenges are the economic situation, social conditions and establishing democracy.

Essebsi was sworn in as president on 31 December 2014. On the occasion he vowed to be “president of all Tunisian men and women without exclusion”, stressing the importance of “consensus among all parties and social movements”.

He had served as minister of foreign affairs from 1981 to 1986 and as prime minister from February 2011 to December 2011. Essebsi is the founder of the Nidaa Tounes political party, which won a majority in the 2014 parliamentary elections.

He was born in 1926 in Sidi Bou Said to a family belonging to the landed élite. His first involvement in politics came in 1941, when he joined the Neo Destour youth organisation. He studied law in Paris and became a lawyer in 1952 at the Tunis bar, where he began his career with the defence of Neo Destour activists.

He was a follower of Tunisia’s post-independence leader Habib Bourguiba, whom he joined Bourguiba as an advisor following the country’s independence from France in 1956. From 1957 to 1971 he performed various functions such as director of the regional administration, general director of the Sûreté nationale or interior minister in 1965, defence minister in 1969-1970 and then ambassador in Paris.

From October 1971 to January 1972, he advocated greater democracy in Tunisia and resigned his post, then returned to Tunis, coming back to the government as minister of foreign affairs in April 1981. In 1987, he switched allegiance following Ben Ali’s removal of Bourguiba from power.

He was appointed as the country’s ambassador to Germany. From 1990 to 1991, he was the president of the Chamber of Deputies.

They died so that we can live

“Many members of our great army lost their lives in Sinai and other places in defence of their country ever since 30 June 2013. What did the state do to commemorate the martyrs of the army and the police? We should engrave their names on a plank and place it in Tahrir Sqaure. I saw a similar list hanging on the wall of the Polish parliament.”
Suleiman Gouda, Al-Masry Al-Youm

One stroke, few birds

“Putin surprised the US, Syria and the West by his sudden decision to withdraw most of his forces from Syria. The decision managed to catch a few birds with one stone. First, it contributed to asserting Moscow’s strong military presence in the Middle East. It also helped the Syrian regime to regain four thousand square miles of land lost earlier to the opposition. The decision aimed to reduce the huge cost of Moscow’s presence in Syria and avoid a repeat of the Afghanistan scenario. In addition, the Russian decision will force the Syrian regime to take the difficult decision needed to reach a political settlement.”
Makram Mohamed Ahmed, Al-Ahram

At gunpoint!

“No reshuffle can be undertaken ‘at gunpoint’ with the social networking militias insisting on the exclusion of competent figures on the pretext that they belong to the former regime. Instead, they select figures incapable of running youth centres. And that makes the situation worse. We will see what happens in the reshuffle expected in the next few hours.”
Dandarawi Al-Hawari,
Al-Youm Al-Sabei

The 27th anniversary

“The return of Taba to Egyptian sovereignty on 19 March 1989, 27 years ago, was the outcome of ferocious battles fought by the Egyptian state against Israel. Thinking, legal and historical maneuvering as well as unity and team work were the tools of those battles. The decision taken then was to form one team that included politicians, diplomats, legal and military experts and historians. They all gave up their political convictions or ideologies and espoused one way of thinking: Egypt’s interest. In that way, the Taba battle became a complementary battle to the great victory of October 1973.”
Youssef Ayoub, Al-Youm Al-Sabei

“Although many years have passed since the return of Taba, 19 March will remain a decisive day in the modern history of Egypt. It is the day on which Egypt regained a dear part of its land after a ferocious war that lasted seven years. I say to the young generation who did not experience those memorable moments that the members of the national committee formed by the former president Hosni Mubarak were up to the huge responsibility. They ran the negotiation battle with wisdom, perseverance and determination.”
Mohamed Barakat, Al-Akhbar

Egyptian Essence: 70% do not practise any sports

“The annual conference of the Egyptian Heart Association revealed that 30 per cent of Egyptians suffer from heart disease. Besides, studies showed that 70 per cent of Egyptians do not practise any kind of sports, 58 per cent of women are obese and 47 per cent of adults are smokers. Thus, it is expected that heart disease caused by smoking and lack of sports will top the causes of death in the near future.”


“The interior minister stated confidently in a press conference on 6 March that Hamas is directly involved in assassinating the Prosecutor General Hisham Barakat. Nevertheless, the intelligence held a coordinative meeting with Hamas yesterday. We are faced with three possible explanations. First, Hamas really did kill Barakat, in which case we should not establish any relations with that group. Secondly, the minister made an unfounded accusation, and in a respectable country that should be clearly disclosed. Thirdly, the intelligence is happy to establish relations with the group that killed Barakat, and I personally doubt that.”
Hisham Khalil

“Painting over it with striking colours does not conceal ugliness. The barriers used by the ministry of interior to secure certain areas are ugly and, in most cases, slow or impede the flow of traffic. They do to paint them with striking colours, but their doing so reveals the ugliness rather than concealing it.”
Nader Fergany


The Big Pharaoh @TheBigPharaoh  
IS issued statement claiming responsibility for Arish attack, saying it was a suicide bomber followed by attack on the police checkpoint.

J. Faraday @CTstudies  
#Egypt Wilayat Sinai claimed an attack in the Al-Safa area of Al-Arish, allegedly killing 20. They posted a picture.

Egypt Independent @EgyIndependent  
#AMAY Baseera: only 6% of Egyptians donated LE 1 daily to Tahya Masr fund

Nervana Mahmoud @Nervana_1  
Obama in #Cuba, the world’s problems are all solved, and spring is eternal.

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