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Cairo comes to Sydney in Radio Muezzin

A documentary theatre work that explores the changing role of muezzins ( the men who call the city to prayer) from the thousands of mosques across Egypt, has opened in Sydney as part of the Sydney Festival 2012. Radio Muezzin looks at the lives of four of Cairo’s muezzins and how their livelihood of singing the daily call to prayer is threatened by a government decision to replace them – and Cairo’s cacophonous soundscape – with a centralised radio version.

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Al-Azhar sheikh proposes bill of rights for Egypt

The head of Al-Azhar, the pre-eminent institute of Islamic learning in the Sunni Muslim world, put forward a Bill of Rights on Tuesday upholding freedom of expression and belief ahead of the drafting of Egypt’s new constitution. The bill, which was in the works for three months in collaboration with secular and Islamist thinkers, is a bid by Al-Azhar to assert its role as the voice of moderate Islam in the face of growing political power of more conservative Islamic groups in Egypt following the February ouster of President Hosni Mubarak.

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Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood will not recognise Israel

Leader in Egyptian Islamist movement says it won’t recognize Israel under any circumstances, and might put up peace treaty with ‘Zionist entity’ up to referendum; ‘Israel is enemy entity,’ he says

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Muslims & Christians celebrate in Tahrir Sqaure

By 8:30pm Tahrir square was packed. The flag-bearers were back. The neon pink standard of the candy-floss man could be spotted again, bobbing over people’s heads in the crowd. The men with their fireworks had also returned. People were handing out stickers calling for the release of detained blogger Maikel Nabil and were carrying posters […]

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Egyptian army officer’s diary of military life in a revolution

Despite the crucial role played by the military in Egypt’s upheaval, little is ever heard from those at the heart of the armed forces: the ordinary, mid-ranking personnel whose loyalty to the military, or lack of it, could yet determine the outcome of the revolution.

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After the spring, the thaw: Egypt

A week ago last Saturday, as scores of protesters fled across the Nile away from a charging squadron of khaki-clad military policemen, the Arab Spring seemed to have come full circle in faintly Orwellian fashion. Almost 11 months previously, I had walked in the opposite direction over the very same bridge as the first waves of Egypt’s popular uprising came crashing into downtown Cairo.

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US campaign to target the Muslim vote

Eyeing to empower the sizable minority ahead of next year’s presidential elections, a leading US Muslim advocacy group has launched a campaign to boost political participation of American Muslims.

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Egypt clashes move into 4th day, U.S. worried

Egyptian security forces fought opponents of army rule in Cairo for a fourth day on Monday and the United States, worried by the violence, urged the generals to respect human rights. Medical sources said the death toll had risen to 13 since Friday. Hundreds have been wounded and scores detained.

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Egypt’s Islamists to offer “Halal” tourism

Islamists are dominating Egypt’s elections and some of them have a new message for tourists: welcome, but no booze, bikinis or mixed bathing at beaches, please. That vision of turning Egypt into a sin-free vacation spot could spell doom for a key pillar of the economy that has already been badly battered by this year’s political unrest.

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Egypt: the real fight for democracy has yet to begin

When it comes to economics, you don’t mess with Wael Gamal. Before becoming a managing editor of Shrouq – Sunrise, to you and me – he was economics editor of the Egyptian daily, and he casts a cold eye on soldiers who don’t understand money. “Not a single one of the 20 generals on the […]

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