Monday’s papers: Denial of Bush’s memoir claims, 55 new MB detainees, Al-Wafd electoral platform

Today’s major state-owned newspapers share identical reports on Egyptian presidential spokesman Suleiman Awad’s response to allegations that President Hosni Mubarak told former US President George W. Bush that Saddam Hussein was in possession of biological weapons during the lead-up to the 2003 invasion. 

In his memoirs “Decisions Points,” Bush claimed Mubarak also informed US military commander Tommy Franks that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction.

On the contrary, Awad emphasized in his press statement, as reported by Al-Ahram and Al-Akhbar, that “Mubarak had warned Bush against Iraq’s invasion as it would constitute a blatant violation of international law.”  

In addition, according to the coverage, Mubarak expressed those same fears and warnings to George H. W. Bush in an effort to dissuade his son from invading.  

In other news, independent Al-Dostour publishes a report in prime front-page real estate on a security crackdown escalation on the Muslim Brotherhood (MB), Egypt’s largest Islamic opposition group, ahead of the 28 November parliamentary elections.

According to the report, 55 MB detainees have been sentenced to prison for fifteen days in Alexandria pending further investigation on charges of affiliation with a banned group, possession of publications against the regime, obstructing traffic, attacking policemen, rioting, and threatening national security. Another other 20 MB arrested members have not yet been sentenced.   

Last Friday, security apparatuses arrested 75 MB supporters who participated in demonstrations supporting their group’s candidates.

According to the coverage, police officers first warned the demonstrators several times against participating in such rallies without prior permission. The demonstration then turned into violent clashes between security forces and MB supporters. 

In a related context, the Court of Administrative Judiciary ruled in favor of seven MB nominees for "workers'" seats in Alexandria and Fayoum, whose candidacies had been excluded.

“According to the court’s ruling, the High Elections Commission will qualify the seven MB members for running in 2010 parliamentary elections,” Al-Dostour quotes Khalaf Bayoumi, the group’s lawyer, as saying.

On a different front, Al-Wafd bears on the top of its front page the headline: “Egypt’s crisis is due to the absence of democracy and monopolization of authority.”

The independent paper brings attention to a public conference of Sayyed al-Badawy Shehata, head of the Wafd Party, in Mataria on Sunday, which was attended by thousands.

“Monopolization authority by single party for more than half a decade is the fundamental reason behind the country’s sufferings,” said Shehata. In addition, he claimed that the National Democratic Party has become incapable of ruling the country.

According to Monday’s papers, Shehata pointed out that the only way for Egypt’s revival is to establish a real democratic regime based on intellectual and political pluralism.

In his speech, Shehata listed all the reforms constituting his platform, saying, “Wafd’s political platform faces all the problems of Egyptian society in a new, simple perspective such as combating poverty, developing a healthcare system, reforming educational institutions and alleviating unemployment.”

The Wafd Party candidate concluded by explaining that his party, given the opportunity, would push a comprehensive vision for Sinai’s development and reconstruction through utilizing its agricultural, industrial and touristic wealth.

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-Gomhorriya: Daily, state-run

Rose el-Youssef: Daily, state-run, close to the National Democratic Party's Policies Secretariat

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

Sawt el-Umma: Weekly, privately owned

Related Articles

Back to top button