Egypt Blog - Live Blogs - Al Jazeera English

Egypt Blog

Keep up with all the latest developments in Egypt as unrest continues to cripple the country following the military's removal of Mohamed Morsi as president on July 3.

  • Al Jazeera covering Egypt demonstrations live. Streaming here:

    http://www.aljazeera.com/watch_now/
  • Police have fired teargas to break up clashes between opponents and supporters of deposed president Mohamed Morsi in Alexandria, Reuters reports.

    "Clashes erupted in Alexandria between pro-Mursi protesters
    and residents who
    oppose Mursi," a source, who
    asked not to be
    identified, told the news agency.


    "They were annoyed by the protest that included
    anti-army
    chants, and it led to security forces firing teargas to
    disperse
    the crowds."
  • Witnesses now say the injured soldiers may have been hit by a homemade bomb that exploded near a military vehicle. Watch Al Jazeera for updates: http://www.aljazeera.com/watch_now/
  • Reports are breaking that there have been six explosions in the city of Rafah and witnesses say the attacks may have targeted military vehicles.

    State TV has reported that four soldiers are injured.  More as we get it.

  • Egypt criticised on Thursday a US decision to curtail military and economic aid to Cairo after a crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood, although Washington stressed it was not severing ties with its long-standing ally.

    The army-backed government insisted Egypt would not bow to US pressure, saying it found the decision strange at a time when the country was "facing a war against terrorism".

    However, US Secretary of State John Kerry said Washington would consider resuming some of the aid "on a basis of performance" in following the interim government's "roadmap" that promises to lead to fair elections.

    [Reuters]
  • Egypt's foreign ministry said on Thursday a travel ban has been lifted for two Canadians who were barred from leaving Egypt following several weeks of imprisonment without charge.

    Badr Abdel-Atty, Egypt's foreign ministry spokesman, said the pair has been cleared to leave Egypt "within hours".

    "The prosecutor general has informed us that they are free to leave the country after the accusations against them were dropped," Abdel-Atty told The Associated Press said.

    He said the prosecutor has ended the interrogation with the Canadians and has decided to cross their name out from the list of those banned from traveling.

    [AP]
  • Israel hopes the US decision to cut aid to Egypt will not affect the two countries' historic peace deal, a Cabinet minister said on Thursday, insisting that Israeli-Egyptian ties remain as close as ever.

    Gilad Erdan, the minister responsible for civil defence, said Israel and Egypt are continuing to cooperate in military and political spheres and that there is "constant contact" between the two countries.

    The minister spoke just hours after the United States announced it was cutting hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to Egypt in response to the Egyptian military's ouster last summer of the nation's first freely elected president and a subsequent crackdown on protesters.

    [AP]
  • The United States will consider resuming aid to Egypt "on the basis of performance" that encourages democracy through elections, US Secretary of State John Kerry said on Thursday, a day after Washington halted some aid to Cairo.

    Speaking shortly after arriving in Malaysia, Kerry said the suspension of some aid to its regional ally did not mean Washington was severing ties with the army-backed government in Cairo over the ousting of President Mohamed Morsi on July 3.

    "The interim government understands very well our commitment to the success of this government... and by no means is this a withdrawal from our relationship or a severing of our serious commitment to helping the government," Kerry told reporters.

    Washington announced on Wednesday it would withhold deliveries of tanks, fighter aircraft, helicopters and missiles
    as well as $260m in cash aid in a bid to ensure Cairo follows a political "roadmap" unveiled after Morsi's removal.

    "We will continue to make certain the roadmap remains a primary goal for the interim government because I believe they do want to continue the relationship in a positive way with the United States," Kerry said.

    "We want this government to succeed but we want it also to be the kind of government that Americans feel comfortable supporting," he added.

    Kerry said restoring the aid would depend on steps taken by the Egyptian government to move toward a political transition.

    [Reuters]
  • Steve Clemons, director of the US-based New America Foundation think tank, termed the White House's cutting off of aid "significant" and "a sizable hit" to Egypt's military.

    "Egypt has been doing none of the things that [the US government] hopes that they might. And after the violence and announcement today of the Morsi trial, the White House is in an embarrassing position if it doesn't [...] take some action. But it's important to know that the White House is not writing Egypt off - they're still a key strategic partner," he told Al Jazeera.
  • Hundreds of Egyptians on Wednesday held candles, waved pictures of slain protesters and demanded retribution from former generals while marking the second anniversary of the killing of 26 people, mostly Christians, in a military crackdown.
     
    But participants in the solemn vigil were divided about criticising the military over the deaths, a sign of shifting attitudes since the army's ouster of President Mohamed Morsi in July.
     
    The more belligerent chanted "down with military rule", and some even called for the execution of former army chief Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, hoisting aloft pictures of him and other now-retired generals they blame for the deaths. One laid a picture of Tantawi on the street for cars to drive over it.
     
    Other demonstrators rejected the anti-military chants, describing the army as a savior for its overthrow of Morsi after demonstrations demanding his resignation.
     
    After the vigil ended, a few participants marched toward Tahrir Square chanting against the military. They were blocked from the square by security forces, who dispersed them with tear gas.
     
    The "Maspero Massacre", named after the state TV building where armoured vehicles rolled over bodies of Christian protesters and gunned down others on October 9, 2011, was one of the worst incidents of state-perpetrated violence during the military-led transition. Back then, Coptic Christians, who compose nearly 10% of Egypt's 90 million majority Muslim population, were protesting a major lack of security after Mubarak's fall. [AP]
  • The US is reducing its military aid to Egypt following the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi and the subsequent crackdown on his supporters by the military-backed government.

    The US provides $1.5bn in aid each year to Egypt. While the State Department did not provide the total amount of the aid being cut, it amounts to hundreds of millions in mostly military aid.

    State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki says the US will withhold delivery of certain "large-scale military systems," as well as cash assistance to the Egyptian government, until "credible progress" is made toward an inclusive civilian government set up through free and fair elections.

    "The United States wants to see Egypt succeed, and we believe the US-Egypt partnership will be strongest when Egypt is represented by an inclusive, democratically elected civilian government based on the rule of law, fundamental freedoms and an open and competitive economy," Psaki said in a statement.

    [AFP]
  • The United States will announce the future of its assistance to Egypt after making appropriate diplomatic and congressional notifications, the White House said on Wednesday.

    White House spokesman Jay Carney said Washington would continue to work with Egypt's interim government a day after reports said that Washington was planning to cut part of its nearly $1.2bn aid.

    A US official said on Tuesday the US was leaning toward withholding most military aid to Egypt except to promote counter-terrorism and other security priorities.

    Egypt has been among the largest recipients of the US military and economic aid for decades.

    [Reuters]
  • Egypt's army chief, who orchestrated the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in July, should not run for the leadership in elections due to be held next year, the head of the biggest liberal party told Reuters.

    General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has said in an interview with an Egyptian newspaper that now was the wrong time to raise the issue of whether he would stand for the presidency.

    But he did not rule out taking part in any contest, and speculation has been rising that the former military intelligence officer under toppled autocrat Hosni Mubarak could contest the vote.

    "I don't think this is advisable and I don't think it would be a good thing for Sisi and the country that Sisi runs for the presidency," said Sayed El-Masry, head of the Al Dostour Party which is a major part of the country's main leftist and liberal coalition, the National Salvation Front.

    "He is doing the country the best favour he can do from his position as a military chief," Masry said in an interview.

    "Sisi's nomination will give the wrong image to the world that what happened was a coup."

    [Reuters]
  • Egypt's military chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi left the door open to a presidential run in elections next year, telling a paper published on Wednesday it was up to "God's will".

    The general is easily the county's most popular political figure after he ousted president Mohamed Morsi and appointed an interim government in July, in response to mass protests demanding the Islamist's resignation.

    "The matter you speak of is tremendous and significant," Sisi replied when asked in an interview with Al-Masry al-Yom whether he would stand for president.

    "But I think the time is not right to ask this question, given the challenges and dangers facing the country which require we focus our efforts on achieving the plan for the future," he said.

    - AFP
  • In video posted Tuesday, the Furqan Brigades described the Monday attack as part of an ongoing war between "Sunni Muslims and infidels who intended to uproot Islam from the land of Egypt." It called for attacks on the military, describing them as "infidels" unworthy of mercy.

    The video showed masked gunmen readying weapons in the dark, followed by several flashes, which the group said were from a rocket-propelled grenade they fired. The attack left a hole in one dish but communications were undisrupted.

    The Furqan Brigades was unknown until months ago when it claimed responsibility for two attacks including one targeting the Suez Canal, which authorities said they foiled.

    - AP
  • Fighters blew up an empty military office in Sinai on Wednesday as an al-Qaeda inspired group said it was behind a deadly police headquarters suicide bombing two days earlier.

    A security official said fighters planted a bomb in a military intelligence office in the town of Rafah bordering the Palestinian Gaza Strip.

    The office had been vacant since July, the official added.

    The blast comes three days after 57 people were killed across Egypt in clashes between fighters and security forces.

    - AFP
  • The trial of Egypt's deposed Islamist president Mohamed Morsi on charges of inciting the murder of protesters will start on November 4, the official MENA news agency reported Wednesday.

    Morsi will stand trial with 14 other defendants over the killings of protesters outside his presidential palace in December 2012, almost six months before his ouster in a military coup.

    - AFP
  • The White House has now weighed in on the matter of US assistance to Egypt, flatly denying that military aid is being halted. 

    In a statement, US National Security Council spokesperson Caitlin Hayden said:


    The reports that we are halting all military assistance to Egypt are false. We will announce the future of our assistance relationship with Egypt in the coming days, but as the President made clear at UNGA, that assistance relationship will continue.

  • The US Defense Department has echoed the State Department's line on these latest reports regarding possible changes to US aid to Egypt. 

    In a short emailed statement, the office of the Pentagon spokesperson confirmed to Al Jazeera that "the Pentagon is not commenting tonight on press reports regarding aid to the Government of Egypt".
  • Reports are coming in that the US may be reconsidering its aid to Egypt, in light of the military coup that overthrew President Mohamed Morsi in July this year.

    The Reuters news agency, quoting an unnamed US official, reports that the US is "leaning towards withholding most military aid from Egypt", except for that related to counterterrorism and security in the Sinai area.

    Al Jazeera's Rosalind Jordan in Washington DC just spoke with Marie Harf, the US State department's deputy spokesperson, who denied the report.

    "We do not have any new announcements to make at this time regarding our assistance to Egypt," she said.
  • Sisi leaves open possibility of running for president

    Egypt's powerful army chief has left open the possibility of running for president in elections due next year, according to excerpts of an interview with the newspaper al-Masry al-Youm published Tuesday.

    Since the July 3 coup that removed President Mohamed Morsi, there have been growing calls from the military's supporters for General Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi to run to replace him. 

    Previously, a military spokesman denied el-Sisi had political ambitions. 

    The interview was the general's first direct comment on the issue.

    "I think the time is inappropriate to raise this question in light of the challenges and risks that the country is going through," he said when asked if he would run, according to excerpts posted on the newspaper's website.

    He said attention must not be distracted from carrying out "the map for the future" for a post-Morsi transition, "which will create a new reality that is hard to evaluate now".

    Then he was silent and added, "God gets His way," according to the excerpts. [AP] 
  • Anti-army protest staged at Cairo University

    Hundreds of anti-government protesters chanted "Down with the military government" outside Cairo University on Tuesday, defying Egypt's army-backed authorities despite deadly clashes with security forces two days earlier.

    Supporters of deposed President Mohamed Morsi had urged university students to protest against the army following the violence on Sunday, one of the Egypt's bloodiest days since the military ousted the Islamist leader on July 3.

    State media said 57 people were killed on a national holiday that marks the start of Egypt's 1973 war against Israel.

    "We are here standing against the coup," said Enas Madkour, a 19-year-old fine arts student at the march near Cairo University, where security forces had parked two tanks and blocked the main road with barbed wire. "I'm against Morsi but I'm not for people killing others and I'm not for the military government we have now."

    Read more and watch video here.
  • Egyptian security forces inspect the site of a car bomb explosion which killed three policemen at the Egyptian provincial police headquarters in al-Tur, in the southern part of Egypt's Sinai peninsula. [AFP]
    by AJE Staff


  • Residents and tourists watch as smoke raises near a state security building after a blast in South Sinai October 7, 2013. Medical sources said three were killed and 48 injured in the blast near the state security building in South Sinai. A witness said it was caused by a car bomb. [REUTERS]
    by AJE Staff


  • A panel of Egyptian judges has recommended the dissolution of the Muslim Brotherhood's political party, a move that signals a widening crackdown on the group.

    The judges' recommendation Monday said the party represents an outlawed group. The recommendations will be delivered to a Cairo court reviewing a case demanding the party's dissolution on October 19.

    The Brotherhood's party was registered in 2011, months after the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak _ the first time the 85-year old organization formed a political party.

    It went on to win a majority in the first post-Mubarak parliament, and its leader, Mohammed Morsi, later won office as Egypt's first democratically elected leader.

    Morsi was ousted in a popularly backed military coup in July. Authorities have since arrested Brotherhood leaders and cracked down on its protests.

    [AP]
  • UK has expressed concern at the violence in Egypt and has emphasised the need for an inclusive political process.

    A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesperson said:

    "We are deeply concerned by the large-scale violence in Cairo and other parts of Egypt that has resulted in over 50 deaths, including from the use of live fire by the security forces. We call on the security forces to ensure that their response is proportionate at all times. We urge all those protesting to do so peacefully and responsibly.

    "We are also concerned by the attacks against security force buildings in El Tur this morning, as well as reports of violent attacks against members of the armed forces in Ismalia.

    "The only sustainable way for Egypt to address its current challenges is through an inclusive political process which allows all Egyptians a voice in the country’s future. The UK stands ready to support the Egyptian people in achieving this."
  • Egyptian security officials say one army officer and four soldiers were killed in a drive-by shooting east of Cairo.

    The officials say the five were on patrol in a pickup truck when masked gunmen in another vehicle opened fire at them in an area west of the Suez Canal city of Ismailia on Monday.

    They say the killed officer was a lieutenant. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak to the media.

    - AP 
  • Two people were killed and around 50 injured on Monday after a car bomb exploded outside a security building in Egypt's Sinai peninsula, security and medical officials said.

    Witnesses said the car had been parked outside the main gate of the security headquarters in Al-Tur, the capital of South Sinai.

    - AFP
  • Security officials have said that unknown assailants fired rocket propelled grenades at communication satellite dishes in Cairo on Monday, damaging one.

    The officials said one of the rockets left a 25 centimetre (nine inch) breach in a satellite dish used for international phone calls.

    - AFP
  • At least 51 people were killed in violence in Egypt as anti-coup protesters take to the streets on the 40th anniversary of an Egyptian attack on Israeli forces. 

    Egypt's Health Ministry announced the number of fatalities and also said that 268 people had been injured in clashes across the country.

    The Interior Ministry announced as night fell that 408 anti-military rule protesters were arrested throughout the day.

    Read more

    by Rahul Radhakrishnan
    by Rahul Radhakrishnan
    by Rahul Radhakrishnan
    by Rahul Radhakrishnan
    by Rahul Radhakrishnan
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    All photos: Associated Press/Hassan Ammar
  • The Associated Press news agency reports that the two Canadians who were released from an Egyptian prison after being held without charges since mid-August were barred from flying out of the country on Sunday, according to Cairo airport officials.

    John Greyson, a Toronto filmmaker and York University professor, and Tarek Loubani, a physician from London, Ontario, had checked in for a flight to Frankfurt, Germany, but were prevented from boarding the plane after their names appeared on a "stop-list'' issued by prosecutors, the airport officials said.

    The two Canadians retrieved their luggage and were free to leave the airport, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief reporters.

    The Canadian Foreign Affairs department said Greyson and Loubani were released from an Egyptian prison on Sunday morning.

    More on Greyson and Loubani here.
  • UPDATE:

    The Health Ministry has said that the death toll from today's clashes across the country has reached 51 and injured 268.
  • Armoured personnel carriers had fired rubber bullets and tear gas at members of the Muslim Brotherhood and supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi during clashes along a road at Ramses square, which leads to Tahrir Square in Cairo.

    [Photo: Reuters]

    by Rahul Radhakrishnan



  • @mosaaberizing : My photos of today's marches and violent clashes in Cairo on the 6 Oct. war anniversary: flic.kr/s/aHsjKjb1TA
  • The Ministry of Interior has released a statement saying that the total number arrests across the country is 408 during the clashes.
  • Our correspondent on the ground, you we can't name for security reasons, spoke to protesters during the day of violence that marked the 40th anniversary of the October War.

    by Philippa Stewart

  • The official death toll continues to rise in Egypt.

    A security source told Reuters news agency that at least 44 people are now confirmed as dead.

    MENA state news agency has put the number of injured at 246.

    More soon.
  • Riot police have been firing rubber bullets and tear gas at protesters while clashes between pro and anti-military rule groups continues.

    [All picture credits: Reuters]

    by Philippa Stewart
    by Philippa Stewart
    by Philippa Stewart
    by Philippa Stewart
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  • The latest death toll from the Health Ministry puts the number of fatalities in the October 6 demonstrations at 34, with a further 209 injured.
  • These two images from EPA seem to sum up the contrast of the day, which saw many Egyptians wanting to celebrate the October 6 anniversary, as they have in previous years, while others saw it is an opportunity to voice their continuing discontent with military rule in the country.

    [Picture Credits: EPA]

    by Philippa Stewart


    by Philippa Stewart



  • More images coming in from the Ramsis area of downtown Cairo, where at least seven protesters were killed.

    Protesters attempt to block to road in Ramsis Street, Cairo [AFP] 
    by Philippa Stewart
    Tyres burn on Ramsis Street, near the area where 7 protesters were killed [AFP] 
    by Philippa Stewart
    Anti-Coup demonstrators rain to find cover as tear gas is fired down Ramsis Street [AFP] 
    by Philippa Stewart
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  • "I agree that there a very serious human rights violations under the new order."

    Juan Cole on Al Jazeera.
  • Watch live: Analysis from Juan Cole from the University of Michegan "It is a revolutionary situation, the old order has been disturbed and a new one hasn't congealed." aje.me
  • "The security sources really had a handle on where people were coming from and was able to stop them."

    "People on the ground report local people joining with security forces to try and stop them [the protesters]."

    Our special correspondent in Cairo.
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