UPDATE: Egypt’s politics digest Sept. 17: Egypt court upholds asset freezes of 5 rights activists in illegal funding case
Human rights activist Gamal Eid is seen at a court in Cairo, March 24, 2016. REUTERS/Asmaa Waguih


CAIRO: No more browsing from site to site, view the top politics news stories on Sept. 17 here:

Egypt court upholds asset freezes of 5 rights activists in illegal funding case

Cairo Criminal Court on Saturday upheld a judicial decision to freeze the assets of five human rights activists who are facing charges of receiving illegal foreign funds from foreign sources, Youm7 reported.

The decision involves founder of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights Hossam Bahgat and the executive director of the Arabic Network for Human Rights Gamal Eid.

The asset freeze decision also involves director of Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS) Bahy al-Din Hassan, director of the Hisham Mubarak Law Center Mosatafa al-Hassan and director of the Egyptian Center on the Right to Education Abdel Hafiz al Tayel.

The defendants are part of a 2011 case accusing a number of NGOs of illegally receiving foreign funding.

In March, a judicial committee overseeing the case has ordered the freezing of assets of four Egyptian human rights activists and their families.


Consular delegation visits family of Egyptian citizen run over by a truck in Italy

A delegation from the Egyptian consulate in Milan has visited the family of an Egyptian citizen who was killed last week in a car accident in Italy’s northern city of Piacenza to extended condolences, Al Masry al Youm7 reported Saturday.

The delegation offered help to the family with the case in which Egyptian citizen Abdel Salam Danaf was run over by a truck while participating in a protest with other Egyptian employees demanding their rights from the management of a company they worked for, according to media reports.

The delegation offered support to the family through all stages of investigations and prosecution.


Contracts to study Ethiopian dam impact to be signed Monday: spox

Contracts with consultancy firms tasked with studying the impacts of Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance Dam (GERD) on Nile downstream countries will be signed on 19-20 Sep., Youm7 quoted Egypt’s irrigation ministry spokesman on Saturday.

The irrigation ministers of Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia are set to sign the contracts in Khartoum during the 12th meeting of the trilateral committee, which will kick off on Monday, ministry spokesman Waleed Haqiqy announced in a Saturday statement.

The technical discussions were suspended since February when a tripartite committee, tasked to discuss GERD issues, announced reaching a unanimous agreement on the proposal submitted by the two French consultancy firms on GERD’s potential impact on Sudan and Egypt.

Since May 2011, Cairo has voiced its concern that the dam could reduce the country’s annual share of more than 56 billion cubic meters of Nile water. Addis Ababa, however, has claimed that the dam is necessary for its development, and will not harm downstream countries.

The $4 billion dam is being constructed on the Blue Nile with a capacity of 74 billion cubic meters, and is expected to generate up to 6,000 megawatts of power.


TNT traces on EgyptAir plane debris split investigators: Le Figaro

(Reuters) Investigators from France’s institute for criminal research found traces of the explosive material TNT last week in Cairo on debris from an EgyptAir plane that crashed in May, triggering a dispute between French and Egyptian authorities, French newspaper Le Figaro reported on Friday.

The origin of these traces remains unclear and Egyptian judicial authorities did not allow French investigators to examine the debris in detail, Le Figaro said, citing a source close to the investigation.

Egypt wishes to write a joint report with France to validate the presence of TNT on the debris. France has refused to do this because the investigators were not able to carry out an adequate inspection to determine how the traces could have got there, Le Figaro said.

A spokesman for the French national police declined to comment.

EgyptAir flight MS804, an Airbus A320, plunged into the eastern Mediterranean en route from Paris to Cairo on May 19. All 66 people on board were killed, including 15 French passengers. The cause of the crash remains unknown.

Audio from the flight recorder of the crashed aircraft mentions a fire on board the plane in its final moments, the investigation committee said in July.

Earlier analysis of the plane’s flight data recorder showed there had been smoke in the lavatory and avionics bay, while recovered wreckage from the jet’s front section showed signs of high-temperature damage and soot.


Egypt’s FM chairs delegation to Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM)

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry chiars Egypt’s delegation in the 17th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), which is due to be held in Venezuela Saturday, said Egyptian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Ahmed Abu Zeid.

“The participation of Foreign Minister comes in the framework of Egypt’s keenness on the success of the summit and achieve the desired goals, especially with regard to coordination and cooperation between the South countries of the South over how to deal with current political developments and enormous challenges facing many areas of the world, especially the Middle East and Africa,” the statement read.


Egypt’s parliament delegation flies to New York to attend UNGA meetings

A total of 20 Egyptian Parliamentarians will head to New York City Saturday to attend in the 71st round of the United National General Assembly meetings, which opened on Sept. 13, Youm7 reported Saturday.

The House of Representatives members will meet with U.S. congresspersons and high-profile officials and politicians, said Solaf Darwish, a member of the parliamentarian delegation.

President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi will attend the Security Council’s summit on Syria, scheduled for Sep. 21 September.


Egypt’s security forces arrest on 45 unregistered migrants at Sallum broder

Egypt’s security forces foiled an illegal migration attempt by 45 people, including 31 Egyptians and 14 Sudanese to Libya through the western border crossing of Sallum, Youm7 reported Saturday.

They were referred to prosecution after reviewing their criminal records. Such arrests happen routinely at Egyptian borders, where security measures were intensified to curb the practice of illegal immigration. Border guards have also seized dozens of attempts to smuggle contraband and drugs.


Egypt’s consulate in Milan offer condolences to family of expat killed in Piacenza

Egypt’s General Consulate in Milan has sent a delegation to the family of Egyptian expat, who was hit by a truck to death, to offer condolences and look at the facts and circumstances of the incident, Youm7 reported a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Saturday.

Egyptian national Abdel Salam Sayed Ahmed was killed in Italian city of Piacenza after a truck, belongs to a company he works for, has ran over him, according to a letter sent to the Egyptian consulate in Milano announced Thursday morning.

The Italian police forces have arrested on the truck driver, who is now under investigations, the letter added.

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