Egypt s interior ministry said in a statement on Monday that a car involved in a deadly blast caused by a traffic collision in front of the National Cancer Institute in central Cairo carried explosives that were set to be used in a terror attack.
At least 20 people were killed and 47 were injured including some in critical condition, in a blast caused by the car collision on midnight Monday in front of the NCI building in Manyal neghbourhood.
The ministry said the explosives laden vehicle was reported stolen a few months ago in Menoufiya.
According to the ministry, the vehicle was on its way to carry out a terrorist operation, although the site of the planned attack is unclear.
The ministry said that the terrorist group Hasm, which is affiliated with the banned Muslim Brotherhood, was behind the blast.
Sudan s Transitional Military Council (TMC) and protest leaders Sunday signed a hard-won constitutional declaration that paves the way for a promised transition to civilian rule following more than seven months of often deadly street rallies.
The agreement, signed at a ceremony in Khartoum, builds on a landmark July 17 power-sharing deal and provides for a joint civilian-military ruling body to oversee the formation of a transitional civilian government and parliament to govern for a three-year transition period.
Protest movement leader Ahmed Rabie and the deputy head of the ruling military council, General Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, signed the declaration at the ceremony attended by African Union and Ethiopian mediators.
"We turned a tough page of Sudan s history by signing this agreement," Daglo, who flashed a victory sign after making a short speech, told reporters.
The signing was met by a wave of applause in the hall as representatives from both sides shook hands.
Overnight, thousands of jubilant Sudanese already took to the streets of the capital to celebrate when the deal was announced before dawn.
A formal signing in front of foreign dignitaries is due to take place on August 17 -- the date on which ousted president Omar al-Bashir is due to go on trial on corruption charges -- another protest leader, Monzer Abu al-Maali, told AFP.
The next day, the TMC and protest leaders are expected to announce the composition of the new transitional civilian-majority ruling council, he said.
"Members of the ruling sovereign council will be announced on August 18, the prime minister will be named on August 20 and cabinet members on August 28," Abu al-Maali told AFP.
Sunday s accord was the result of difficult negotiations between the leaders of mass protests which erupted last December against Bashir s three-decade rule and the generals who eventually ousted him in April.
On Saturday, the Arab League welcomed the agreement saying the signing of the constitutional declaration "would launch a new and important phase in line with the Sudanese people s aspirations".
Sudan s head of the TMC Abdel Fattah al-Burhan lauded the "long-awaited deal" in an interview on Saudi broadcaster Al-Hadath.
Demonstrators among the crowds that took to the streets in the early hours hailed victory in their struggle for a new Sudan.
"For us, the revolution succeeded now and our country set foot on the road towards civilian rule," said 25-year-old Ahmed Ibrahim as he joined the cavalcade of vehicles that criss-crossed the streets of Khartoum, horns blazing.
Fellow protester Somaiya Sadeq said she hoped there would now be justice for those who had given their lives.
"We have been waiting for a civilian state to seek fair retribution from the murderers of our sons," she told AFP.
The Ethiopian special envoy to Sudan Mohamed Darer said that the constitutional declaration puts the basis of the transitional period, including a civil, democratic rule that gives equality to all Sudanese people.
"We have shown to the whole world that the Africans can solve their problems without foreign interference ", he stressed.
Iran accused the United States on Thursday of "childish behaviour" driven by fear after Washington imposed sanctions on its foreign minister, escalating tensions between two foes at loggerheads over Gulf shipping and Iran s nuclear programme.
Fears of a Middle East war with global repercussions have risen since the United States ditched world powers 2015 nuclear deal with Iran last year and revived sanctions on Tehran.
The Islamic Republic has retaliated by resuming uranium enrichment seen in the West seen as a potential conduit to developing atomic bombs. Iran denies any such intent.
After several attacks on tankers - blamed by Washington on Tehran, which denied responsibility - the United States is trying to forge a coalition to secure Gulf waters, though European allies have been loath to join for fear of provoking open conflict.
European parties to the nuclear pact have called for diplomacy to defuse the crisis, but Tehran and Washington have taken hard lines and on Wednesday the Trump administration slapped sanctions on Iran s foreign minister in a likely further blow to any chances for troubleshooting dialogue.
"They (Americans) are resorting to childish behaviour... They were claiming every day We want to talk, with no preconditions ...and then they sanction the foreign minister," Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on state television.
Zarif, a pivotal player in the nuclear deal who was educated and lived for years in the United States, dismissed the action and said it would not affect him as he had no property or other interests in America.
US afraid of Zarif s words, Iran says
"A country which believes it s powerful and a world superpower is afraid of our foreign minister s interviews," Rouhani said, alluding to numerous interviews that Zarif - a fluent English speaker - gave to American media when he visited New York for a United Nations conference in July.
"When Dr Zarif gives an interview in New York, ... they (Americans) say Iran s foreign minister is misleading our public opinion," Rouhani said. "What happened to your claims of liberty, freedom of expression and democracy?"
Rouhani added: "The pillars of the White House are made to tremble by the words and the logic of a knowledgeable and self-sacrificing man and diplomat."
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Zarif was being sanctioned because he "implements the reckless agenda of Iran s Supreme Leader...(We are) sending a clear message to the Iranian regime that its recent behaviour is completely unacceptable".
In a tweet earlier on Thursday, Zarif said peace and dialogue were an "existential threat" to hawkish politicians allied with U.S. President Donald Trump who take a hardline stance against the Islamic Republic.
Zarif has in the past said that a so-called “B-team” including Trump s national security adviser John Bolton, an ardent Iran hawk, and conservative Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could goad Trump into a war with Tehran.
In repudiating the nuclear deal reached by predecessor Barack Obama, Trump said he wanted to secure a wider accord that not only limited Iran s nuclear activity but also curbed its ballistic missile programme and reined in its support for powerful proxies in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Lebanon.
Trump intensified sanctions in May to try to strangle Iran s oil exports, the lynchpin of its economy.
Fears for Gulf oil shipping
The security of shipping in the Gulf, through which about a fifth of the world s oil passes, has shot up the international agenda since May when Washington accused Iran of being behind explosions that holed six tankers over several weeks.
In July, Iran seized a British-flagged tanker in the Strait of Hormuz, the Gulf s outlet to the open seas, in apparent retaliation for Britain s seizure of an Iranian ship accused of violating European sanctions by taking oil to Syria.
In a sign of increasing jitters over security in the Gulf, Royal Dutch Shell said on Thursday it was not taking any British-flagged tankers through the Strait of Hormuz for the time being.
The U.S. Embassy in Berlin said on Tuesday the United States had asked Germany to join France and Britain in a mission to protect shipping transiting the strait and "combat Iranian aggression". Germany rebuffed the request.
"Germany will not take part in the sea mission presented and planned by the United States," Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said. The Gulf situation was serious and everything should be done to avoid conflict, he said. "There is no military solution."
Four children were among 14 civilians killed in an airstrike on Al-Thabet market in Yemen s northern Saada province on Monday, according to Houthi authorities, amid conflicting accounts of what happened.
A Houthi-run hospital report, released by spokesman Mohammed Abdul Salam, held the Saudi-led coalition responsible for the incident and said it also wounded 26, including 14 children.
In response, coalition spokesman Col. Turki al-Malki told CNN that: "The targeting of Al-Thabet market by the terrorist, Iran-backed Houthi militia is a deliberate attack against innocent civilians."
The Saudi-backed Yemeni government s information minister, Moammar al-Eryani, also blamed the explosion on the Houthis in a tweet Monday, and said that the rebels used Katyusha rockets.
The United Nations International Children s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) in Yemen said it was "disheartened with reports of the killing and injury of children" in a Twitter post.
Houthi military spokesman Yahya Saree blamed the Saudis and condemned the attack in a statement.
"The Al-Thabet market crime in the Qataber district in the province of Saada that was committed against civilians proves the failure of the Saudi regime in the military and humanitarian fields as they deliberately committed a massacre against civilians," Saree wrote.
The conflict in Yemen began in early 2015 when Houthi rebels -- a minority Shia group from the north of the country -- drove out the internationally-recognized government and forced its president, Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi, to flee.
The crisis quickly escalated into a multi-sided war, with neighboring Saudi Arabia leading a coalition of Gulf states against the Houthi rebels. The coalition is advised and supported by the US, among other nations.
The Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project found in June that the total number of reported fatalities in Yemen since 2015 is more than 91,000.
Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood journalist Omar Hassan has posted on Facebook an audio recording of a meeting of group leaders in Turkey where a leading member is accusing other high level members of financial corruption.
In the recording, a leading member believed to be Amir Bassam, accuses the current MB secretary-general Mahmoud Hussein, the MB representative in Africa Mahmoud El-Beheiry, and the MB spokesperson Ibrahim Mounir of being corrupt.
KHARTOUM (Reuters) – At least four school children and one adult were shot dead as security services broke up a protest in the Sudanese city of El-Obeid on Monday, campaigners said.
A group of doctors linked to the opposition said the five were hit during a demonstration by high school pupils in the main city in Sudan s North Kordofan state.
Many other people were injured, added the Central Committee of Sudanese Doctors – one of a group of unions and professional bodies that helped lead months of protests against Sudan s long-term leader Omar al-Bashir.
There was no immediate statement from the state security services, or from Sudan s military leaders who ousted Bashir in a coup in April as the protests mounted.
Videos circulating on social media purported to show pupils protesting outside El-Obeid s main hospital against the killings and injuries.
Hundreds of teenagers in uniform chanted “blood for blood, we will not accept blood money” in the footage. Reuters could not immediately verify the authenticity of the videos, or when they were taken.
The doctors group did not give details on what first started the protest in El-Obeid, around 400 km (250 miles) southwest of the capital Khartoum.
But opposition activists have kept up their demonstrations since April, pressing for the military to speed up the move to civilian rule and calling for justice for people killed during a raid on a sit-in protest in Khartoum in June.
The main opposition Forces of Freedom and Change coalition is negotiating with the ruling military council to finalize an agreement for a three-year transition to elections.
The two sides signed a deal on July 17 setting out the transition s institutions. But talks have been repeatedly delayed since then amid disagreements of the wording of a constitutional declaration to determine the role of a new council to run Sudan.
A powerful explosion hit central Kabul on Sunday, wounding Afghan President Ashraf Ghani s running mate in the upcoming election and killing at least two others, officials said.
At least 25 civilians were injured in the blast that occurred on a road near the private Ghalib University and Shahid Square, a four-way intersection, interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi said.
Rahimi said that immediately after the blast, gunmen had entered the university building and were targeting the main political office of the vice presidential candidate, Amrullah Saleh.
Saleh was wounded by shrapnel before being safely evacuated from the office of his Afghan Green Trend Party.
The party office is located adjacent to the university.
Photographs shared by a government official showed Saleh sitting in a garden with blood stains on his right arm. He was surrounded by security guards.
Saleh is an uncompromising opponent of the Taliban and other hardline Islamist groups.
Ghani, Saleh and over a dozen other Afghan politicians launched their presidential campaign on Sunday.
Ghani said in a tweet: "My brother, true son of the Afghan soil and first VP candidate of my electoral team, Amrullah Saleh has survived a complex attack by enemies of the state. We are relieved and thank the almighty that the attack has failed."
Saleh, who commands strong support among Afghanistan s minority ethnic Tajiks, was not immediately available for comment.
"The explosion hit a very busy part of the city. Our rescue teams have been rushed to the site," Rahimi said.
No militant group has claimed responsibility.
Last week, Kabul was hit by three consecutive bomb blasts claimed by Islamic State and the Taliban, killing 11 people and injuring more than 40.
At least seven people were killed and 21 wounded by three blasts that rocked the Afghan capital Thursday ahead of the election season.
The bombings came amid a wider surge in violence in Kabul and around Afghanistan, where the war is taking a brutal toll even amid a US-led push for a peace deal with the Taliban.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attacks, which came just three days before the official campaign season for the September 28 presidential election gets underway.
Previous polls have been marred by violence and bloodshed from the Taliban and other insurgent groups who refuse to recognise Afghanistan s fragile democracy.
According to interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi, the first blast came around 8:10 am (0340 GMT) when a suicide bomber riding a motorcycle hit a bus in eastern Kabul. He said the bus belonged to the ministry of mines and petroleum.
Rahimi said two other blasts had occurred, including a car bomb, also in eastern Kabul.
Rahimi put the death toll at seven with another 21 wounded. It was not immediately clear if this was from all the blasts or just the first.
Egypt has condemned Israel s "escalation" in Jerusalem after it moved in earlier this week to demolish a cluster of Palestinian homes near a military barrier in the occupied West Bank.
Egypt warned against "the dangers of these actions on the efforts to achieve a just and comprehensive peace," the foreign ministry said in a statement late on Wednesday.
Security forces moved in to Sur Baher, on the edge of East Jerusalem, to tear down buildings which it said were built illegally too close to the separation barrier. However, residents say they had been given building permits by the Palestinian. The move has triggered a flurry of international criticism.
Egypt expressed "rejection of any actions that would change the status quo in Jerusalem in contravention of the relevant resolutions of international legitimacy and other international and humanitarian agreements," the statement added.
It stressed on "Egypt s firm stance in supporting the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people," and said it will continue to work to resume peace process negotiations based on a two-state solution.
Coptic Orthodox Patriarch Spokesperson Paul Halim said that Pope Tawadros II has been in contact with sovereign authorities to gain permission for the visitation of two monks sentenced to death over the murder of Bishop Epiphanius at Wadi al-Natroun.
Authorities allowed Paula Ishaq, the priest in charge of the prison service, to visit the two defendants in prison, Halim told Al-Masry Al-Youm.
The visit request was turned down at first by authorities, but was later allowed upon Tawadros request, church sources said.
The Damanhour Criminal Court has sentenced to death the two monks responsible for the murder of Bishop Epiphanius and requested the Grand Mufti s opinion on the sentence in February.
Defendants Wael Saad Tawadros, formerly known as Ash eyaa al-Makary, and Raymon Rasmy Mansour, formerly known as Faltaous al-Makary, previously pleaded not guilty in the case.
The court heard the prosecution plead after the prosecution showed video records of the first defendant confessing to the crime and reenacting how he committed the murder.
The defendant has denied his involvement in killing Bishop Epiphanius in previous sessions, claiming that he was abused and pressured into confessing by investigators.
The Interior Ministry s Criminal Investigations Department said that police investigated Tawadros in the monastery without resorting to force or pressure during the investigations.
Back in July 2018, Bishop Epiphanius was found dead in front of his monastic cell at the Saint Macarius Monastery at Wadi al-Natroun.
Monks at the scene immediately notified al-Natroun police, who discovered that the Bishop had fractures in the back of his skull, leading to suspicion of murder.
After the Public Prosecution office in Alexandria concluded investigations in August, Tawadros and Mansour were sent to criminal trial over the murder.
Tawadros confessed to the killing, and was deprived of his ecclesiastical rank.
He claimed that he hit Epiphanius three times on his head using an iron tube, which was prepared specifically for the crime. He added that his partner in crime, Mansour, was at the time standing watch to make sure the coast was clear.
Mansour later unsuccessfully attempted suicide on August 6 to escape punishment and underwent police watch at the Anglo American Hospital in Zamalek while recovering.
Egypt s State Information Service (SIS) released a statement strongly condemning an interview broadcast on the “Mekamleen” Channel between Presenter Mohamed Nasser and the Human Rights Watch official (HRW) Sarah Leah Whitson, the Chairperson of the Middle East and North Africa department at the organization.
The Mekamleen channel is known for its backing of the Muslim Brotherhood, officially classified as a terrorist organization by the Egyptian state.
The SIS stated that that the 70 minute interview proves that the HRW is biased towards the Muslim Brotherhood despite their repeated insistence of standing for human rights. The statement added that there is a significant amount of collaboration between the HRW and the Muslim Brotherhood.
The statement also decried the HRW s reports on Egypt which have been categorically refuted by the SIS s Human Rights department.
During the interview which aired from Istanbul in Turkey, Whitson focused on Egypt s human rights alongside several other countries in the region; however, discussions about the Turkish regime s various human rights violations were noticeably absent. In its statement the SIS highlighted various figures on Turkey s own violations, including the number of Turkish citizens expelled from their jobs since Turkey s failed 2016 coup d état attempt which they cited as 170,372 individuals.
The SIS noted the role played by the Mekamleen Channel in bolstering terrorism, as the channel is a vital promotion tool for the Muslim Brotherhood used to spread false news about Egypt.
The statement further delved into the channel s funding resources, raising serious doubts as the channel has never divulged these sources nor have they suffered any financial challenges, supporting the idea that they are being funded by the Muslim Brotherhood.
Highlighting Nasser s biased tendencies towards the Muslim Brotherhood, the statement also noted his extreme opposition towards the Egyptian state. Nasser is wanted by Egyptian security and was penalized for eight years due to his attempts to help overthrow the Egyptian regime in a terrorist attack, the statement reads.
Nasser has gone as far as to even encourage murder several times while on air.
The SIS statement shed light on several of Nasser s calls to murder such as a January 2015 episode where Nasser repeatedly said, “Kill the police officers, I want to inform all the police officers wives that your husbands are going to be killed.”
Furthermore, Nasser has encouraged suicide attacks, saying that those who commit suicide should also bomb crowds of people if they were planning to die anyway.
He also once interviewed infamous Muslim Brotherhood figure Salama Abdel Kawi, who told him that whoever would kill an Egyptian state official could only grow closer to god, according to the statement.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi has renewed a nationwide state of emergency for three months starting 1AM Thursday 25 July 2019.
The renewal of the state of emergency was approved by the parliament on 11 July 2019.
According to a decree, published in the official gazette, the decision allows the Egyptian armed forces and police to “take [measures] necessary to confront the dangers and the funding of terrorism and to safeguard security in the country."
The state of emergency was first imposed in April 2017 after two church bombings which killed 47 people. It has been continually extended since then
Egypt s Armed Forces foiled a suicide attack targeting a security checkpoint early Thursday in North Sinai governorate.
According to an Armed Forces statement, the suicide attacker attempted to target a security checkpoint near a parking lot in Sheikh Zuweid city.
he official spokesperson of Egypt s Foreign Affairs Ministry, Ahmed Hafez, recently said that field victories achieved against the Islamic State (IS) are not considered the end, asserting the necessity to continue combating terrorism in all its shapes.
Hafez s words came during Egypt s participation in meetings of The International Alliance s Communication Strategy Working Group that is affiliated with the International alliance against the IS. The meetings took place on July 11 and 12 in Washington.
He noted that the only way to eradicate terrorism is to have a unified international approach regarding the confrontations with terrorist organisations. This confrontation should target all levels including the extremist IS rhetoric and ideologies that promote terrorism through media outlets.
He added that Egypt s delegation, which is participating in the aforementioned meetings, explained that Egypt s vision to combat terrorism is based on first facing extremist ideologies and the efforts of President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to renew the religious rhetoric, in addition to the role adopted by Egypt s Muslim largest beacon of Al-Azhar to end terrorism.
Hafez asserted that Egypt will keep its support to The International Alliance s Communication Strategy Working Group to combat terrorism through the experiences it gained in its war against extremism and terrorism, beside the high rank of its religious institutions such as Al-Azhar
Turkey plans to send a fourth ship to waters off Cyprus to search for gas and oil despite European Union moves to curb contacts and funding for Ankara over the issue, the foreign ministry said on Tuesday.
“The decisions will not affect in the slightest our country s determination to continue hydrocarbon activities in the Eastern Mediterranean,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said.
At least five people were killed in twin suicide blasts near a Shia mosque in southwest Baghdad on Monday, Iraqi security and medical sources said.
Doctors at the capital s Al-Yarmuk hospital gave a casualty toll of five dead and 14 wounded.
Two suicide bombers blew themselves up near Abu al-Fadhel al-Abbas mosque in the Al-Turath district, a police officer told AFP, on condition of anonymity.
Egypt s Ambassador to Canada Ahmed Abu Zied has praised the Egyptian Coptic Festival taking place in the Canadian city of Mississauga.
The Egyptian Coptic Festival is a cultural event that celebrates Egyptian culture, history and arts in the public square for the purpose of creating awareness about Coptic Canadians, their heritage and role in society.
"The second edition of the festival succeeded in gaining further popularity and influence across the outskirts of Toronto, where the Egyptian community is heavily concentrated," the ambassador said in statements to MENA.
The first edition of the festival was held in September 2018.
The event brings together some 10,000 people from within and outside the Coptic community in Canada for family fun, music, shows, documentaries, kids activities and traditional food.
It is considered one of the biggest events for Canadians of Egyptian origin in North America.
The event aims to enhance community collaboration through linking past and present achievements and emphasising the diverse and inclusive Mississauga community.
The event programme features musical performances, performing arts, food, books, documentaries, kids activities and youth-led performances, allowing the general public to grow their understanding of Egyptian history and its contributions to civilisation.
This year s event featured Egyptian pop singer Hisham Abbas and violinist Azmy Magdy Azmy, as well as other music concerts and folk shows.
There are nearly 60,000 Canadians of Egyptian origin residing in Canada.
Regime and jihadist-led forces were locked in clashes Thursday on the edge of an opposition bastion in northwest Syria after a jihadist-led advance that killed 71 fighters overnight, a monitor said.
Russian and regime aircraft have ramped up their deadly bombardment of the Idlib region -- administered by Syria s former Al-Qaeda affiliate Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, and home to some three million people -- since late April, despite a months-old international truce deal.
Turkey on Wednesday vowed to continue drilling activities off Cyprus despite tensions with the European Union, which has called on Ankara to cease its "illegal" activities.
The discovery of huge gas reserves in the eastern Mediterranean has sparked a dispute between EU member Cyprus and Turkey, which last month sent a second ship, the Yavuz, to search for oil and gas in the region.