Thursday’s papers: Mohie Eddin to the World Bank, ‘Burn a Quran Day,’ and church controversies

Nearly every Egyptian newspaper dedicated its biggest front page headlines on Thursday, 9 September to the news of the nomination of Investment Minister Mahmoud Mohi Eddin to the position of Managing Director of the World Bank. Photos of Mohi Eddin in a traditional galabeya addressing a popular conference in his constituency of Kafr Shokr, in the Nile Delta Governorate of Qalyubiya, adorned the top half of most front pages.

“The director of the World Bank in a provincial galabeya,” read the front page headline of the liberal opposition paper Al-Wafd. State-owned Al-Ahram ran the headline, “Mubarak accepts Mohi Eddin's nomination to high-ranking position at the World Bank.” A sub-header read, “The minister makes an appearance in Kafr Shokr wearing a galabeya, assures he won't forget his constituency.” Al-Ahram also ran a smaller article beneath the aforementioned, which announced that Sayyed al-Badawi Mohi Eddin would replace Mahmoud, his paternal cousin, in the upcoming parliamentary elections as the representative of the ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) from the district of Kafr Shokr.

The independent Al-Shorouq wrote, “Mohi Eddin leaves the Ministry of Investment for the World Bank.” Sub-headers read, “Cabinet reshuffle expected following Eid,” and quote the minister as saying, “I'll assume my new post in Washington by the first week of October.”

Nearly every local newspaper also ran a front page headline pertaining to the planned "Burn A Quran Day," scheduled to take place in Gainesville, Florida this Saturday. “Warnings escalate regarding danger of burning the Quran on September 11,” read Al-Wafd. A sub-header read, “The Vatican considers it a serious offense to Muslims" and, "The European Union describes it as an irresponsible act.”

The chief headline on the front page of the independent Al-Dostour announced, “Next Saturday… Burning the Quran in Florida despite warnings.” The sub-header of this article paraphrased the ideas of organizer Pastor Terry Jones: “We will confront the evil of Islam. The Quran is responsible for September 11.” Covering the same topic, Al-Shorouq mentioned that, “The churches of Egypt and the world denounce the burning of the Quran in Florida.” The article mentioned that Coptic Orthodox, Protestant, and Catholic churches in Egypt have all condemned the planned event.

Al-Ahram ran the headlines, “Security concerns and apprehension in America due to the fundamentalist incitement to burn the Quran,” and quote US Attorney General Eric Holder as saying, “What's happening in Florida is idiotic and dangerous.” Al-Ahram ran a photo of a large protest in Afghanistan against this event, with a smaller superimposed photo of Jones standing in front of a wagon with an inscribed invitation to “International Burn A Quran Day – 9/11/2010.” A smaller headline on the front page, article inside, read, “Pope Shenouda to Al-Ahram: The pastor calling for the burning of the Quran is a racist and a hate monger.”

Other news headlines focused on local church controversies. Al-Wafd chose the headlines, “Fleeing Christian women… A fire that burns the nation” and, “Clashes between monks and environmental authorities in Wadi al-Rayyan” to describe sectarian unrest and territorial disputes attributed to the Coptic church. The first headline relates to Kamilia Shehata, the wife of a Coptic priest who reportedly abandoned Christianity and her husband, fled home, and converted to Islam. She was allegedly forcibly returned to a monastery. The clashes in Wadi al-Rayyan center around a monastery allegedly being built by monks within the Environmental Protectorate of Wadi al-Rayyan in Fayoum.

The chief headline on the front page of the independent Sawt al-Ummah criticized Mufti Ali Gomaa's stance pertaining to the “Permissability of returning a Christian woman to the church after her conversion to Islam.” The paper ran a large photo of Kamilia Shehata, Pope Shenouda, and the Grand Mufti.

Nearly all newspapers ran notices informing their readers that the local time would revert to pre-Ramadan daylight saving timing. “Adjust your watch/clock tonight, add 60 minutes” read a small headline on the front page of Al-Wafd. Al-Shorouq announced in a headline, “Revert to summer daylight saving time as of tonight” in compliance with Law 14/1995, for the first day of Eid.

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-Shorouq: 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