Egypt signs $200M agreement with EBRD for energy efficiency

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CAIRO – 27 December 2017: Minister of Investment Sahar Nasr signed an agreement with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to provide a $200 million loan to the Egyptian Natural Gas Holding Company (EGAS). Egypt Today Focusing on improving the gas pipeline and transmission network of Egypt, the EBRD said on its website that the loan will be directed to installing waste heat recovery, turbo-expanders, gas metering data systems infrastructure and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) separation plant as ... Read More »

Italy’s ‘minister of fear’

TOPSHOT - A migrant tries to board a boat of the German NGO Sea-Watch in the Mediterranean Sea on November 6, 2017.
During a shipwreck, five people died, including a newborn child. According to the German NGO Sea-Watch, which has saved 58 migrants, the violent behavior of the Libyan coast guard caused the death of five persons.

 / AFP PHOTO / Alessio Paduano        (Photo credit should read ALESSIO PADUANO/AFP/Getty Images)

Interior Minister Marco Minniti credits his ‘desert diplomacy’ with stopping the flow of migrants to Italy. By GIULIA PARAVICINI Politico To his admirers, Marco Minniti, Italy’s powerful interior minister, is the mastermind who solved Europe’s migration problem. To his critics, he’s the unscrupulous architect of a secret deal with North African militias and thus responsible for severe human rights violations of refugees trapped in Libyan detention centers. Since he took office in December 2016, the 61-year-old former communist from Calabria, ... Read More »

How Egyptians are fighting forced marriage

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CAIRO — Four women in their 20s launched Nov. 25 the Mategberneesh (Don’t Force Me) online campaign in an effort to counter forced marriage in Egypt. Ahmed Aleem AlMonitor The campaign aims to raise awareness on social media as well as open up a space to discuss the controversial topic In the future, the campaign plans to organize live street events to increase public interaction. “The campaign idea came on the heels of combating violence against women, and forced marriage ... Read More »

Egypt denies Russian mediation to restore ties with Turkey

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CAIRO – 24 December 2017: Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry denied speculations about Russian mediation between Egypt and Turkey, stressing that the Egyptian and Turkish people have many things in common. Nawal Sayed  Egypt Today “Egypt hopes to overcome tensions with Turkey on bases of respect of countries’ sovereignty without interfering into each other’s domestic affairs,” Shoukry told Akhbar al-Youm newspaper on Saturday. Shoukry’s statements come amid several denials made by Egyptian officials, while Turkish officials have reaffirmed hopes to ... Read More »

New Risks in Libya as Khalifa Haftar Dismisses UN-backed Accord

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Khalifa Haftar, who rules eastern Libya, has dismissed the two-year-old, UN-backed accord about how the country should be run. Issandr El Amrani Haftar’s regional and international partners should act now to mitigate this new risk of escalation over his apparent ambition to rule Libya on his own. ICG Tensions are rising in Libya after the de facto ruler of the country’s east, Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar, publicly dismissed the two-year-old international deal on how Libya should be governed. To neutralise ... Read More »

Zimbabwe’s “Military-assisted Transition” and Prospects for Recovery

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President Emmerson Mnangagwa has the chance to embark on a much-needed process of economic and governance reform in Zimbabwe ICG The military’s role in the political transition casts a shadow on the road to credible elections, which remain a priority if his government is to earn national and international legitimacy. What’s the issue? After Zimbabwe’s military intervened to bring an end to 37 years of rule by former President Robert Mugabe, their continued presence as key political players may complicate ... Read More »

Donald Trump threatens to cut aid to countries over UN Jerusalem vote

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General assembly to vote on rejecting US recognition of city as Israeli capital Trump: ‘We’re not going to be taken advantage of any longer’ Peter Beaumont in Jerusalem The Guardian Donald Trump has threatened to withhold “billions” of dollars of US aid from countries which vote in favour of a United Nations resolution rejecting the US president’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. His comments came after the US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, wrote to about 180 of ... Read More »

Kenya stands its ground in sea row with Somalia

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Kenya has filed its response at the International Court of Justice in the Indian Ocean border dispute case filed by Somalia KENNEDY KIMANTHI Daily Nation A statement from the Office of the Attorney-General Githu Muigai has said Kenya’s position is that the maritime border remains as it is and the dispute be solved through negotiations. “This position is entrenched in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and several resolutions and decisions of the African Union Heads ... Read More »

You’ve Heard of the Russian Revolution — Now Look What’s Happening in Zimbabwe!

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People all over the world are still fascinated by events in Russia in 1917 Seth Ferris Even a cursory glance at this period shows they were momentous times to live in, with history unfolding in front of people seemingly under its own power. ΝΕΟ It must have been quite something to directly experience the collapse of the old order, the two revolutions and all the hopes, dreams and despair of different sectors of the population. As they happened in an ... Read More »

Libya commander Khalifa Haftar signals start of race for power

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Head of Libyan National Army declares UN political solution a failure and says his forces will answer to no one but Libyan people Associated Press and Agence France-Presse The National Libyan military commander Khalifa Haftar on Sunday declared that the mandate of the UN-backed unity government had expired and hinted at his willingness to stand for president as the country entered a “dangerous” period. A UN-brokered agreement signed in Morocco on December 17, 2015 established Libya’s Government of National Accord (GNA) ... Read More »

Tributes pour in for late Kenyan scholar Calestous Juma

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Prominent Kenyan academic Calestous Juma has died in the United States at the age of 64, prompting an outpouring of grief and tributes on social media. AlJazeera “Intellectual giant”, “innovator”, “tireless champion of the world’s poorest” – these are just some of the words used to describe the Harvard University professor after news of his death broke out on Friday. Juma, whose research and writing focused on science and the environment, was a passionate advocate of the role of technological innovation in… Earlier this ... Read More »

Timeline: game-changing gas discoveries in the eastern Mediterranean

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Massive gas discoveries in the Mediterranean Sea’s Levant Basin have attracted a flood of investment – and no shortage of geopolitical tension. Chris Lo Offshore Technology This timeline brings together some of the most important milestones in the development of offshore gas projects in the eastern Mediterranean. Unlike the Gulf of Mexico or the North Sea, the Mediterranean Sea has always been better known for stunning climate, cuisine and a booming tourism trade than offshore oil and gas. But as ... Read More »

Wanted for genocide, Sudan leader welcomed by Erdogan at Jerusalem summit

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Omar al-Bashir is alleged by ICC to have committed war crimes in conflict that UN says killed at least 300,000 and displaced more than 2.5 million AFP The Times of Israel  ISTANBUL — Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, who is wanted on charges of genocide and war crimes, attended an emergency summit of the world’s main pan-Islamic group in Istanbul, Wednesday. Bashir was among leaders who responded to a call by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to attend the meeting after ... Read More »

A confident and upbeat Putin goes on Mideast ‘victory’ tour

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Ρussian President Vladimir Putin declared “victory” in Syria during a surprise visit Monday to a military base there, then traveled to Egypt and Turkey, where he celebrated Moscow’s deepening ties with those key regional powers. Hamza Hendawi and Vladimir Isachenkov Associated Press Chicago Tribune The tour highlighted Russia’s expanded reach in the Middle East and the global clout of its leader, who announced last week he is seeking re-election for another six-year term in March. Speaking to Russian troops on ... Read More »

Ed Sheeran means well but this poverty porn has to stop

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Aid adverts featuring ‘white saviours’ may bring in cash but they remove all dignity from those who are suffering Afua Hirsch  The Guardian It was almost exactly five years ago that I realised something was changing A video landed on my phone – I was living in Ghana then – raising awareness of “this time of need for Norway”. This “need” was winter, and the video was hilarious. Amid scenes of blizzards, vehicles overturned in snow, and children battling through ... Read More »

Trump travel ban: Supreme Court lets restrictions take full effect

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The US Supreme Court has ruled President Donald Trump’s travel ban on six mainly Muslim countries can go into full effect, pending legal challenges. BBC The decision is a boost for Mr Trump’s policy against travellers from Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen. The ruling covers the third version of the directive that the president has issued since taking office. Seven of the nine justices lifted injunctions on Monday imposed by lower courts against the policy. Only liberal Justices ... Read More »