Monday’s papers: Adly trial adjourned again while Sawiris comes under attack

Today's headlines in Egypt are dominated by clashes that took place Sunday at the New Cairo Criminal Court between security forces and families of protesters who died during the 25 January revolution.

Yesterday the court postponed the trial of former Interior Minister Habib al-Adly and six of his assistants. They face charges of involvement with killing protesters during the 18-day uprising.

Pictures of protesters throwing stones at the armored security vehicles that carried Adly and other defendants are at the top of Al-Wafd’s front page. The liberal paper says the families first clashed with security because the it cordoned off the court to prevent them from attending the trial. The postponement of the trial to 25 July led to the escalation of the violence, leaving five police officers injured and three armored vehicles destroyed, according to the report.

The state-owned paper Al-Ahram sheds light on Amr Moussa’s tweets defending himself against recently published reports of his involvement in Israeli gas export deal. The Egyptian presidential hopeful categorically denied allegations that he sent a letter to the former petroleum minister approving the export of natural gas to Israel, the report says.  

Two days ago, an independent paper published documents that show Moussa approved the deal in 1993, when he was foreign minister under Hosni Mubarak.

Moussa described the accusations as a “political assassination” attempt aiming to ruin his reputation.

“The way in which the report and its headline were published was not correct,” Al-Ahram quotes Moussa’s electoral campaign spokesperson as saying. He adds that the content of the report included fabricated information that deliberately intended to insult Moussa.

Meanwhile Al-Gomhurriya quotes the newly appointed minister of foreign affairs, Mohamed al-Orabi, as saying “The 25 January revolution has given Egyptian diplomacy a big push and unprecedented freedom that supports the country in its relations with world’s countries.”

Orabi took office last Sunday, replacing Nabil al-Araby, who was recently appointed Arab League secretary general. It is reported that the new minister met the head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, along with the senator John McCain, a Republican from Arizona, to discuss regional and international affairs as well as methods to support the Egyptian economy. 

Throughout his exclusive statements to the state-run paper, Orabi praised the great effects of the revolution on Egypt’s current political stance. “The revolution has become an important factor in determining the priorities of Egypt’s foreign policy, which helps fulfill Egyptians’ aspirations.”

On a different note, Al-Dostour publishes the headline “Islamic trends call for boycotting Mobinil.” The independent paper reports that Assem Abdel Maged, a leading member of Jama’a al-Islamiya, called on Islamic groups and parties to stop using Naguib Sawiris' mobile network of and burn its SIM cards. Maged expressed anger at Sawiris' "unacceptable offenses to Islam", saying that Egypt's current critical circumstances demand solidarity between all citizens to rebuild the country, not stances that spurn the majority’s religion.

Though Al-Dostour does not, Al-Ahram mentions at the bottom of its front page the act which provoked the anger against Sawiris. It reports that Sawiris tweeted a sarcastic picture of Mickey Mouse with a long beard and Minnie Mouse wearing niqab (full-body veil). While Sawiris has apologized for the picture, saying that he did not mean to make fun of Islam, it seems his apology was not accepted by everyone.

It is alleged that some Salafis drew a portrait depicting Sawiris as a monkey and wrote on it “Sorry, we were joking with you.” Six lawyers from the Islamic Lawyers Association filed a lawsuit against Sawiris, accusing him of stirring sectarian strife.   

Egypt's papers:
Al-Ahram: Daily, state-run, largest distribution in Egypt
Al-Akhbar: Daily, state-run, second to Al-Ahram in institutional size
Al-Gomhurriya: Daily, state-run
Rose al-Youssef: Daily, state-run
Al-Dostour: Daily, privately owned
Al-Shorouk: Daily, privately owned
Al-Wafd: Daily, published by the liberal Wafd Party
Al-Arabi: Weekly, published by the Arab Nasserist party
Youm7: Weekly, privately owned

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