Articles by Middle East Monitor

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Egyptian billionaire defends former soccer star Aboutrika after court ruling places him on terror list

Egyptian billionaire Naguib Sawiris defended retired soccer star Mohamed Aboutrika after a court put the latter on a terror list. It is “impossible” for Aboutrika to be a terrorist, the Coptic Orthodox telecommunications tycoon said when he was asked by another Twitter user, on the social networking website, whether the popular player once refused to take one million Egyptian pounds (around $53,213) from him in an incident that dates back to 2006. According to the privately-owned Egyptian daily newspaper Al-Watan, Sawiris wanted to give the sum to Aboutrika as a present after the Egyptian national team won the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations. Sawiris affirmed the incident in a tweet on 20 January in response to a question on Twitter. […]


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Egyptian billionaire defends former soccer star Aboutrika after court ruling places him on terror list

Egyptian billionaire Naguib Sawiris defended retired soccer star Mohamed Aboutrika after a court put the latter on a terror list. It is “impossible” for Aboutrika to be a terrorist, the Coptic Orthodox telecommunications tycoon said when he was asked by another Twitter user, on the social networking website, whether the popular player once refused to take one million Egyptian pounds (around $53,213) from him in an incident that dates back to 2006. According to the privately-owned Egyptian daily newspaper Al-Watan, Sawiris wanted to give the sum to Aboutrika as a present after the Egyptian national team won the 2006 Africa Cup of Nations. Sawiris affirmed the incident in a tweet on 20 January in response to a question on Twitter. […]




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Israel lifts restrictions on building more homes in East Jerusalem

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has told senior ministers he is lifting restrictions on settlement building in East Jerusalem, a statement said on Sunday, immediately after the city’s municipal government approved permits for the building of hundreds of new homes in the area. “There is no longer a need to coordinate construction in the Jewish neighbourhoods in East Jerusalem. We can build where we want and as much as we want,” the statement quoted Netanyahu as saying, adding that he also intended to allow the start of building in the West Bank. “My vision is to enact sovereignty over all the settlements,” the statement also said, pointing to Netanyahu’s apparent bid to win greater support from settlers and appeal to […]


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Israel lifts restrictions on building more homes in East Jerusalem

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has told senior ministers he is lifting restrictions on settlement building in East Jerusalem, a statement said on Sunday, immediately after the city’s municipal government approved permits for the building of hundreds of new homes in the area. “There is no longer a need to coordinate construction in the Jewish neighbourhoods in East Jerusalem. We can build where we want and as much as we want,” the statement quoted Netanyahu as saying, adding that he also intended to allow the start of building in the West Bank. “My vision is to enact sovereignty over all the settlements,” the statement also said, pointing to Netanyahu’s apparent bid to win greater support from settlers and appeal to […]


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Syria’s warring sides gather for new attempt to break deadlock

Syria’s warring sides meet in Kazakhstan’s capital on Monday with Russia, Turkey and Iran, sponsors of the talks, trying to make progress towards a goal others have repeatedly failed to reach: an end to the six-year-old conflict. The talks are the first time the opposition and representatives of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have come together since United Nations-brokered negotiations in Geneva were suspended early last year. Organisers played down expectations of a breakthrough in the capital, Astana. There are no senior government figures among the delegations and Kazakhstan’s foreign ministry said on Sunday it expected the meetings to be over by midday on Tuesday. The main Russian negotiator at the talks, Alexander Lavrentyev, said it was still unclear if the […]


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Syria’s warring sides gather for new attempt to break deadlock

Syria’s warring sides meet in Kazakhstan’s capital on Monday with Russia, Turkey and Iran, sponsors of the talks, trying to make progress towards a goal others have repeatedly failed to reach: an end to the six-year-old conflict. The talks are the first time the opposition and representatives of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have come together since United Nations-brokered negotiations in Geneva were suspended early last year. Organisers played down expectations of a breakthrough in the capital, Astana. There are no senior government figures among the delegations and Kazakhstan’s foreign ministry said on Sunday it expected the meetings to be over by midday on Tuesday. The main Russian negotiator at the talks, Alexander Lavrentyev, said it was still unclear if the […]


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Abbas meets King Abdullah to discuss US embassy move

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and met Jordanian King Abdullah II on Sunday in Amman to discuss a potential response to the proposed move of the US embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv. According to a statement, Abbas described the meeting as “useful and necessary” and suggested that the issue of the US embassy was a significant one to Jordan and both Palestine, in particular because Jordan has a special role as administer for the holy Muslim sites in occupied East Jerusalem. The statement said: We wish two thing of the new American administration: First, to stop talks about moving the US embassy to Jerusalem; and second, to get involved in conducting serious negotiations between Palestine and Israel to reach a […]