‏إظهار الرسائل ذات التسميات Terrorism. إظهار كافة الرسائل
‏إظهار الرسائل ذات التسميات Terrorism. إظهار كافة الرسائل


Suicide bomber detonates in Saudi Arabia Masjid, 25 reportedly killed

A suicide bomber has blown himself up at a Masjid in Saudi Arabia, which was used by members of the security forces. The blast took place in the Asir region, and at least 25 military men have been killed, according to local reports.

The attacker struck the mosque during the early afternoon in the city of Abha, the provincial capital, which is southeast of Mecca and not far from the Yemeni border.



12 killed in soldiers’ bus rammed by #Sinai suicide car bomber #Egypt

A suicide bomber rammed his explosive-laden car into one of two buses carrying off-duty soldiers in Egypt’s turbulent northern Sinai region, killing 10 and seriously wounding 35, military officials said.

They said the bomber struck as the buses travelled between the border town of Rafah and the coastal city of el-Arish. The explosion damaged bothvehicles. The 10 victims were the bus’s driver, three members of a security detail and six of the off-duty soldiers, according to a statement by Colonel Mohammed Ahmed Ali, a military spokesman.
“The precious blood of our sons strengthens our resolve to cleanse Egypt and shield its sons from violence and treacherous terrorism,” he wrote on his Facebook page.

The wounded were being treated in military hospitals, he said.

The soldiers belong to the 2nd Field Army, which is doing most of the fighting against Islamic militants waging an insurgency against security forces in Sinai. The buses were on their way to Cairo, the officials said.
The northern Sinai region, which borders Gaza and Israel, has been restless for years, but attacks have grown more frequent and deadlier since Islamist President Mohammed Morsi was ousted in July.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, but suicide car bombings are a signature method by militant groups linked to or inspired by al-Qaida. It was the latest in a series of similar attacks targeting army and police facilities and checkpoints. In August, gunmen pulled 25 police conscripts off minibuses in the Sinai and shot them dead by the side of the main road linking Rafah to el-Arish.
Northern Sinai’s violence occasionally has spilled over into cities in the southern part of the peninsula as well as mainland Egypt, targeting police, soldiers and politicians. In September, the Interior Minister, who is in charge of the police, survived an assassination attempt by a suicide carbomber. Earlier this week, a senior security officer who monitors Islamist groups, including Mr Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood, was shot dead as he drove in Cairo’s eastern Nasr City district.


UPDATED: Bomb explodes near #Egypt interior minister's convoy

8 wounded, no deaths in a bombing targeting Egypt's interior minister convoy Thursday, minister survives

Egypt's Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim survived an assassination attempt when a bomb detonated early onThursday near his convoy in northeast Cairo, officials told Ahram Online.
Earlier reports said the blast resulted from a car bomb, but state TV said that the bomb was thrown by unknown assailants from a nearby building at around 10:30 am.

"Initial investigations showed a big-sized explosive devise targeted [at my] car while it was passing by," the interior minister told state-owned TV two hours after the attack, adding that the bomb seems to have been "remotely detonated."

The minister, who escaped the attack unscathed, said four vehicles among his convoy were "damaged", along with a number of civilian-owned cars.
At least eight, including six security officers and a child, were injured in the attack, according to Egypt' Ambulance Authority. Some shops were also damaged in the blast.
The wounded sustained severe injuries including leg amputations, Ibrahim added in his brief interview.
Explosives experts quickly moved to comb the site and specify the bomb type, the Ministry of Interior said in a statement.
The capital's Nasr City area has been the stronghold of a major protest camp by loyalists of Egypt's toppled Islamist president Mohamed Morsi. The interim government has accused Morsi's followers of "terrorism" and inciting violence.

The minister has sponsered a deadly raid by police to clear Islamist-led protest sites in Cairo and Giza mid-August which left hundreds dead and thousands injured, setting off days of bloody street violence. More than 100  members of security forces were killed in the crackdown and ensuing violence.


#HRW #Egypt: Mass Attacks on Churches

Egyptian authorities should take the necessary steps to protect churches and religious institutions against mob attacks, Human Rights Watch said today. Since August 14, 2013, attackers have torched and looted scores of churches and Christian property across the country, leaving at least four people dead. Authorities should also investigate why security forces were largely absent or failed to intervene even when they had been informed of ongoing attacks.

Immediately following the violent dispersal of the Muslim Brotherhood sit-ins in Cairo on August 14, crowds of men attacked at least 42 churches, burning or damaging 37, as well as dozens of other Christian religious institutions in the governorates of Minya, Asyut, Fayum, Giza, Suez, Sohag, Bani Suef, and North Sinai. Human Rights Watch has verified with family members and a lawyer that at least three Coptic Christians and one Muslim were killed as a result of sectarian attacks in Dalga, Minya city, and Cairo.

“For weeks, everyone could see these attacks coming, with Muslim Brotherhood members accusing Coptic Christians of a role in Mohammad Morsy’s ouster, but the authorities did little or nothing to prevent them,” said Joe Stork, acting Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Now dozens of churches are smoldering ruins, and Christians throughout the country are hiding in their homes, afraid for their very lives.”

 Human Rights Watch spoke with 43 witnesses, priests, and Coptic activists, who confirmed the attacks on 42 churches, dozens of Christian institutions and schools, and Coptic-owned business and homes. Human Rights Watch visited 11 sites in Minya city and Bani Suef, where attacks took place, and spoke to the head of the security directorate for Minya governorate.

In the vast majority of the 42 cases Human Rights Watch documented, neither the police nor the military were present at the start or during the attack. In one case, in Dalga, a village in southern Minya governorate, residents said that men had attacked the local police station around the same time. In Kirdassa, Giza, west of Cairo, an activist said that mobs attacked the local police station, killing15 officers according to the Associated Press, before attacking Al-Mallak church. A priest in Malawi, a town in Minya governorate south of Minya city, told Human Rights Watch that he called emergency services and police multiple times while mobs burned his church, but no one came. Another Dalga resident said that on August 16 the governor promised to send armored personnel carriers to protect Copts from ongoing violence, but that none came.

“We [church officials] spoke to the prime minister, minister of interior, and a military official asking them to intervene,” Coptic Bishop General of Minya Anba Makarios told Human Rights Watch on August 19. He said the officials promised to send protection, but it never arrived.

In Hadeyeq Helwan, 30 kilometers south of Cairo, a resident told Human Rights Watch that one armored personnel carrier finally arrived on the afternoon of August 17, a day after the St. George Church there came under attack.

Residents in Minya city told Human Rights Watch that in the week following Morsy’s removal from the presidency on July 3, someone had spray-painted Coptic-owned store fronts in Minya’s city center with a black “X” to distinguish them from Muslim-owned buildings. Those marked subsequently came under attack.

The attacks come after weeks of sectarian discourse by Muslim Brotherhood supporters at the Nahda and Rab’a al-Adawiya sit-ins in which speakers claimed or insinuated a link between Copts and Morsy’s removal. One speaker, Assem Abdel Magid, said on July 24,“Copts and communists are supporting Sisi in the killing of Muslims.” A YouTube video of a pro-Morsy march on July 12 shows marchers chanting “Islamic Islamic despite the Christians” while passing a church.

Some Muslim Brotherhood leaders have condemned the recent sectarian attacks. On August 16, Dr. Mourad Ali, spokesman of the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, released a statement that said, “Pursuant to our party’s indivisible principles, we strongly condemn any attack, even verbal, against Copts, their churches or their property.”

Others however have suggested a Coptic role in the ongoing crackdown on the group. On the afternoon of August 14, the Freedom and Justice Party Helwan Branch posted a statement on the group’s Facebook page accusing Pope Tawadros, the religious leader of the Egyptian Coptic community,of participating in Morsy’s removal and of inciting Copts to block roads, encircle mosques, and storm them. The message ended with, “For every action there is a reaction.” On August 16, the Muslim Brotherhood website published a story with the headline,“The police and the church open fire on the al-Haram march at Giza tunnel and Murad Street.” Several residents and clergy in areas where church attacks occurred said that local religious leaders incited groups to attack churches.

Sectarian attacks against Christians had increased even before the August 14 action against the camps. On July 5, following Morsy’s ouster on July 3, four Copts were killed in Luxor governorate. On July 23, Human Rights Watch called on the Egyptian authorities to take steps to protect Christians, investigate attacks, and hold those responsible to account.

“While a few Muslim Brotherhood leaders have condemned these attacks, they also need to tell the group’s followers to stop inciting violence by insinuating that the Coptic minority is responsible for the crackdown,” Stork said.

Sectarian Attacks Since August 14
Most of the attacks occurred in Upper Egypt. John Sameer, 21, a resident of Minya city, 250 kilometers south of Cairo, told Human Rights Watch that at 10 a.m. on August 14, he saw crowds of thousands of men on trucks and on foot approaching his neighborhood chanting anti-Christian slogans directly aimed at the Egyptian Coptic community. “Tawadros, you are a coward for the Americans” and “Tawadros, you coward, get your dogs out of the square,” he said they chanted, referring to the head of the church and the participation of Christians in June 30 protests in Cairo’s Tahrir Square calling for Morsy’s removal from power.

Sameer said that the crowd attacked the al-Amir Tadros Coptic Church that afternoon, breaking in and taking the church safe, then setting the building ablaze. Sameer, who went to the scene to observe, said that men around the church were carrying Molotov cocktails and that at least five had assault rifles, but they did not attack him. Sameer followed the men as they attacked and burned approximately 20 shops, three other churches, the Coptic boys’ school complex, the Saint Joseph’s girls’ school, the Gunud al-Maseeh orphanage, and the Jesuit community center. Sameer said that security forces were absent throughout the incident, and emergency vehicles and firefighters did not come to extinguish the fires despite calls for help.

Philimon Sameer, John’s brother, 24, told Human Rights Watch that he approached al-Amir Tadros Coptic Church at around 3 p.m. to try to save it, but that four bearded men threw rocks at him and other Copts trying to extinguish the fire. He said no police or security services came to stop the attack, despite the fact that the church is 20 meters from the Minya governorate’s security directorate. He said he saw several Christian institutions and Christian-owned businesses in the area looted and burning, including the al-Anba Arsanious Hall church building, the Roxy supermarket, the Rozina Café, and the YMCA building. No one was injured in these attacks, he said.

Father Bernaba at the Mar Meena Coptic Church in Minya city told Human Rights Watch that a large crowd attacked his church on the afternoon of August 14, setting fire to the church clinic and services building, and damaging the front exterior of the church itself. He said that security forces and police did not come to stop the attack. At midnight, however, when attackers returned, security forces dispatched an armored personnel carrier. It deterred the attackers, who moved away from the church.

Wissam Mamduh, 19, a resident of Sohag city, 450 kilometers south of Cairo, told Human Rights Watch that at 9 a.m. on August 14, he observed a group of approximately 150 men march from a sit-in at Thaqafa square toward the St. George Coptic Church nearby, chanting “Islamic Islamic,” a common chant by proponents of an Islamic state. After storming and looting the church, the men set it on fire. He said that the men also attacked and burned dozens of Coptic-owned businesses and homes in the area. The security services did not arrive for another two hours, after everything was on fire, he said.

In Dalga, a village in southern Minya governorate, three witnesses told Human Rights Watch that mobs attacked churches and Coptic homes as soon as the news of the Cairo sit-in dispersal reached residents of the town. Gamil Nagih, 21, said that at 7:45 a.m. he heard the imam of a nearby mosque announce over the mosque loudspeakers, “Go help your brothers in Rab’a.” At 9 a.m. he said, he saw thousands of men gathering outside Saints Mary and Ibram church. The men broke the through doors while shouting “Islamic, Islamic,” he said. The attackers then looted the church and set it on fire. The attackers also torched 20 Coptic homes and looted and burned Coptic-owned shops in the area, he said.

Human Rights Watch visited the remains of the Franciscan girl’s school and church in Bani Suef, 125 kilometers south of Cairo, which a mob attacked and burned on August 14. Father Boulos Fahmy, a Catholic priest affiliated with the school, said that at around 9 a.m. the nuns, who were alone at the school, contacted him by phone telling him that a mob was threatening the school. He notified the police, who sent a car to deter the attackers but it departed less than an hour later after a nearby police station came under attack, he said. The men returned soon after, looting and setting fire to the school and church. The men forced three nuns to leave the school and walked them through nearby streets, verbally abusing them. Local Muslim residents rescued the nuns from the mob and escorted them away to safety.

Another Dalga resident, Sameer Lamie, 31, told Human Rights Watch that a crowd of men gathered outside his home before 9 a.m. A group of armed men eventually broke down his door and entered his house. He said the men shot his cousin Iskandar Doss twice, while Lamie, his mother, and Doss’s wife and daughter-in-law escaped by climbing to the roof. Lamie said the attackers fired birdshot at him, hitting him in his side with 13 pellets, and they hit his mother with a pellet under her eye. Lamie said he learned later that Doss died of his wounds. He said that no security forces or police arrived during the attack.

In Minya city, residents, family members, and the Christian owner of the Mermaid boat restaurant, along the Minya city corniche, told Human Rights Watch that two Mermaid employees – Bishoy Mikhail, a Copt, and Ihab Ali Ahmed, a Muslim – died while hiding in the bathroom of the boat after a mob set it on fire. Human Rights Watch researchers visited the boat on August 19 and viewed the charred remains of shoes, pants, and a mobile phone on the floor of the bathroom.

An employee of a neighboring boat restaurant, Al-Dahabiya, told Human Rights Watch that at 11 a.m. he heard a commotion at the Mermaid boat. He said: “I called the administration and told them, and at 11:15 a.m. I saw flames coming out of the boat, and then a group of 70 people approached and said they would burn the [Dahabiya] boat too.” When he asked them for a safe exit, they told him to jump into the Nile with his staff and swim away. When he responded that some staff could not swim, the men allowed him and the staff to leave unharmed from the front entrance. He said the men then torched the Dahabiya boat restaurant.

A Coptic shop owner in the Cairo neighborhood of Ezbet al-Nakhl died from gunshot wounds after a group of men attacked his shop, next to the Abu Siffin church, activists from the Maspero Youth Union told Human Rights Watch. Human Rights Watch could not confirm the man’s death with family members.

In spite of the four deaths, most residents with whom Human Rights Watch spoke in Minya city said that attackers targeted buildings instead of people.

Attacks on Police and Police Response
Church clergy throughout Upper Egypt expressed frustration and desperation that security services did not quickly intervene to stop the widespread attacks. The pastor of the al-Mashyakhiya Evangelical Church in Malawi, a village in Minya governorate, told Human Rights Watch that he watched as attackers looted and burned his church on the afternoon of August 16. He said:
At 5:30 p.m., around 200 people came and started shooting at the church, they entered and looted the halls, the church, a seven-story building, and set it all ablaze. They took everything, all the equipment, furniture, everything. I called the police and army on their hotlines ... no one came, the church is gone…
Bishop Makarios told Human Rights Watch that authorities failed to protect churches despite repeated warnings, and that on August 19, five days after the attacks, police still had not returned to the streets in adequate numbers since the morning August 14.

Ishak Ibrahim, a researcher with the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, told Human Rights Watch that a group of men attacked a police station in Kirdassa, Giza, before moving on to loot and burn al-Mallak church. The Associated Press, which interviewed the sole police officer who survived the attack, reported that the mob killed 15 officers and then mutilated their bodies. A YouTube video purportedly filmed after the attack shows a group of officers lying on the ground in pools of blood.

Maj. Gen. Abdelaziz Qura, head of the Minya security directorate, told Human Rights Watch that on August 14, when news of the sit-in dispersal reach Minya, “groups simultaneously attacked police stations and some churches in Minya. They were shooting live fire at security forces, and the security forces did not leave their positions because they didn’t want anyone to free the prisoners [held in police stations], like what happened in January 2011.” He said that groups attacked 12 police stations in Minya governorate, six of which they burned to the ground, and that attackers killed 13 police officers and wounded another 30 with live fire. He said that police have arrested 41 men in Minya, some of whom he believes belong to Islamist groups, and that prosecutors have initiated investigations of all church attacks.

Qura confirmed that security forces had not moved to protect Christian-owned buildings and churches since August 14, saying that police could not deploy at full strength without assistance from military armored personnel carriers, but that he expected the security situation to improve by August 21.

According to Reuters, at least 100 members of the security forces have been killed throughout Egypt in attacks on police stations and check points or in clashes with protesters since August 14. The authorities should investigate such violence and ensure criminal accountability, with due judicial process, of those found responsible, Human Rights Watch said.

Incitement to Attack Christian-Owned Buildings and Churches
In addition to Islamist rhetoric relating to support by Copts for Morsy’s removal, residents and priests told Human Rights Watch that local groups and religious leaders also incited groups to target Christians. At least 10 residents in Minya city told Human Rights Watch that in the week following Morsy’s removal, someone spray-painted a black X on Coptic-owned store fronts in Minya’s city center to distinguish them from Muslim-owned buildings.

Human Rights Watch researchers observed these markings on August 19 on many of the damaged businesses. One Christian shop owner in Minya, Alfons Massoud, 70, said that at 3:30 p.m. on August 14 young boys with knives and between 20 and 30 bearded men with guns attacked and burned a neighboring shop bearing the X mark. He said that they torched his shop after seeing that it had a Coptic name.

Bishop Makarios told Human Rights Watch that he heard local mosque preachers inciting sectarian attacks when the sit-in was being dispersed, saying “Islam is in danger, the infidels will eradicate Islam, go defend your brothers in Rab’a.” He noted that approximately 80 churches in the area had received anonymous phone calls warning of impending attacks against them in the week leading up to August 14.

A witness told Human Rights Watch that an imam at a mosque in the Cairo neighborhood of Maasara called over the mosque loudspeakers for the eviction of Coptic residents. Mina Lamie, 29, a neighborhood resident, said that on August 15 he heard the imam say, “The Copts are behind all of this, they participated on June 30 ... we have to burn the churches.” He said that at 11:30 p.m. thousands gathered and began chanting, “The people demand the eviction of the Copts.” No churches in the area were actually attacked, Lamie said.

List of Churches Burned or Damaged Since August 14
  1. Al-Amir Tadros Coptic Church
  2. Al-Anba Mousa Church 
  3. Evangelical Church  
  4. Al-Rasuliya Apostolic Church
  5. Mar Meena Coptic Church
  6. Mar Meena Church 
  7. Evangelical Church 
  8. Baptist Church
  9. Saints Mary and Ibram Coptic Church
  10. Al-Mashyakhiya Evangelical Church
  11. Good Shepherd Catholic Church and School
  12. Mar Yohanna Church  
  13. Adventist Church   
  14. Al-Rasuliyya Church 
  15. Mar Gergas Coptic Church
  16. al-Qowsiyya Bishopric and Chruch
  17. Evangelical Church  
  18. St. Therese Church  
  19. Nahdet al-Qadasa church
  20. St. George Coptic Church and Diocesan Office
  21. St. Mary Church   
  22. St. Mary Church   
  23. Al-Amir Tadros al-Shatbi Church
  24. Al-Shaheeda Damyana Church
  25. Evangelical Church   
  26. Al-Amir Tadros Church  
  27. Al-Mallak Church   
  28. St. Mary Church   
  29. Karmet al-Rosul Church  
  30. St. Mary Church   
  31. Al-Younaniyya al-Qadeema Church
  32. Good Shepherd Catholic Church and School
  33. Saviour’s Anglican Church
  34. Franciscan Church and School
  35. Mar Gerges Church
  36. Mar Gerges Church Services Building
  37. Franciscan Catholic Church and School
Churches Attacked, Not Damaged
  1. Al-Malak Church  
  2. Abu Teeg Bishopric
  3. Franciscan Church and School 
  4. St. George Hadayeq Church
  5. Abu Sifin Church   

Minya city
Minya city
Minya city
Minya city
Minya city
Minya – Bani Mazar
Minya – Bani Mazar
Minya – Bani Mazar
Minya – Dalga
Minya – Malawi
Minya – Malawi
Asyut city
Asyut city
Asyut city
Asyut city
Asyut city
Asyut city
Asyut city
Asyut city
Sohag city
Fayum city
Fayum – al-Manzala
Fayum – al-Manzala
Fayum – al-Zurbi Village
Fayum – al-Zurbi Village
Fayum – al-Sarg, Ebshway
Giza – Kirdassa
Giza – Deir Hakim
Giza – Atfih
Giza – al-Mansouriya
Suez city
Suez city
Suez city
Suez city
North Sinai – Al-Areesh
Bani Suef – al-Wasita
Bani Suef city

Asyut city
Asyut city
Asyut city
Helwan city
Cairo – Ezbet al-Nakhl

#Egypt: tourism industry in deep decline

Egyptian tourism is in deep decline because of the current political unrest. 

Many hotels have closed. Some remain open for a handful of tourists. Mostly from Cairo, looking to get away from the security situation, sometimes from further afield.  spoke with a group of German tourists. “It looks pretty nice. Everything is very good. The hotel is very good, the beach is good. The Red Sea is beautiful. I love it here.”
Many tour operators have cancelled flights to Egypt. Some countries have advised against travel. The Egyptian Ministry of Tourism assures that travel to the Red Sea and South Sinai is completely safe. The severe damage to other resorts make them no-go areas for tourists.
Egyptian tourism minister Hesham Zaazoi told  “To go around in this area, in Hurghada and Red Sea and southern Sinai. We are so many humdreds of kilmoeters from Cairo where all the ‘hot spots’ are. They can see for themselves that the situation is good, safe, secure, and the government is very much adamant to ensure the safety and welfare of clients who come here to Egypt.”
The Egyptian tourism industry is an important one. It generates the equivalent to over eight billion euros a year, which is 11 percent of Egypt’s GDP.
The Ministry of Tourism is working with foreign ambassadors to resolve the travel advisories and ensure them that some areas are completely safe.
Mohammed Shaikhibrahim says: “Tourist areas of Egypt are seeing a noticeable decline in the number of foreign tourists because of the political and security situation. Egyptians are trying to make up for this through domestic tourism. They hope that when calmness returns to the streets of Egypt, these resorts will be, once again, attractive to visit.”


حملة إلكترونية لإدراج «الإخوان» ضمن قائمة «المنظمات الإرهابية» بالعالم #Egypt

تم تدشين الحملة العالمية لجمع التوقيعات لكى يتم ارداج منظمة الاخوان المسلمين ضمن منظمات الارهاب الدولية ولمطالبة منظمات المجتمع الدولي، ومناشدة  بأصحاب الضمير الشرفاء فى كل مكان، بحظر نشاط الجماعة بكل ما هو متاح من الوسائل، واعتبارها تنظيمًا إرهابيًا، ومصادرة مقراتها وأملاكها وأموالها،

للتوقيع من هنا
لمطالبة منظمات المجتمع الدولي، ومناشدة ما وصفهم بأصحاب الضمير الشرفاء فى كل مكان، بحظر نشاط الجماعة بكل ما هو متاح من الوسائل، واعتبارها تنظيمًا إرهابيًا، ومصادرة مقراتها وأملاكها وأموالها، حسب الصفحة الرسمية للموقع. - See more at: http://almogaz.com/news/politics/2013/08/18/1057029#sthash.wmdlIio3.dpuf


An account of torture in #Rabea #Egypt

With its one-month anniversary around the corner and attacks on its participants only increasing, tensions are high at the Rabea al-Adaweya Muslim Brotherhood sit-in, defiance now sharing the air with paranoia and suspicion. Reports of the torturing of “infiltrators” by the sit-in’s members have by this point been confirmed—the same cannot be said of claimed sightings of bodies being removed from the area. Meanwhile, another form of escalation seems to be taking place.

Speaking to Mada Masr under condition of anonymity, 40-year-old Tarek Badr (not his real name) describes how his efforts to renew a driver’s license last Monday resulted in his temporary detainment and physical abuse.
“Obviously, that whole area is part of the [pro-Morsi] sit-in, they’ve occupied the entrance to that building as well,” Badr says of the Nasr City Traffic/Motor Registry Department, which stands directly adjacent to the mosque around which the sit-in was formed. “I went down alone but there were several other people there, trying to get their paperwork done as well.”
The group attempted to access the building, but “people began to gather around us, telling us that we had to accept Morsi as our president and that we were doing Islam a huge disservice by not respecting him enough. We told them we just wanted to get our paperwork done, and that it shouldn’t take more than an hour if they’d let us through.”

Meanwhile a side conversation was going on, one which Badr thought “seemed to have been started by a resident of [the buildings currently besieged by the sit-in] who had been trying to reason with the protestors.” Volunteers from the sit-in’s security team then showed up (“I could tell because of their helmets and padded vests”) and asked some questions before rounding up 13 of the outsiders and escorting them from the scene.

“It wasn’t directly forceful, the way they took us,” he says. “But it didn’t have to be—it’s their sit-in, their territory. The group that moved the 13 of us consisted of ten or fewer individuals but what are you going to do?”
As they moved through the sit-in, “none of its members seemed to notice or care about what was going on, or had any objection about the fact that we were clearly being lead somewhere.”
The 13 men were then lined up along the wall of a public school across from the Motor Registry Department, somewhat removed from the heart of the sit-in. “They made us face the wall as they searched us, and took our wallets and phones. They struck us on our backs and necks with sticks and their bare hands. The whole time they were questioning us—not for anything useful, just to understand how and why we were not accepting Morsi as our ‘master’—that’s the word they used. They called us the ‘enemies of Islam’.”
Although some of the men attempted to object to their treatment, Badr suffered silently. “I could see what happened with the people who spoke up—they just got struck for it, and harsher insults. And I thought of what I’ve seen in the news recently—I didn’t want to have my fingers amputated, or worse. And for what? There is no conversation that could have been had, no room for any sort of discussion.”
“I did want to ask them, though: Why all this? Why build a so-called Islamic state in a public square? Aren’t we all Egyptians, and isn’t this a Muslim country? Why is it that you’re in a country yet all you can see of it is this square? At the very least, welcome the people who come to this square, then. Don’t terrorize and antagonize them.”
“But I said nothing,” he admits.
The 13 men—“two of whom seemed under 30, one was definitely over 50, and the rest in the middle”—were then divided into two groups. “They took eight of us away from the school, and I could tell the five that stayed behind were the ones deemed responsible for starting that conversation earlier.”
“To be honest, I can’t remember the faces of any of the other men,” he says. “But the older man was among the five kept at the school.”
Away from the school, the men were given LE20 each, told to return to the sit-in after iftar to reclaim their possessions, and finally released. “I didn’t want to go back there, obviously,” Badr claims. “I made some calls, searching for someone who might have a reliable contact within the Brotherhood to go back with me to Rabaa.”
The following morning he returned to the sit-in with a sympathetic Brother, he says, and was directed to a “lost items” stand where, from a plastic bag, a sit-in volunteer returned a wallet minus its money and one of two cellular phones.
“I thanked them for their courtesy and accommodation, and left,” he says. “Of course, they tried to apologize, claiming that the whole situation was just a giant misunderstanding and that this isn’t the way the Muslim Brotherhood operates, it’s just the pressure they were under—of course, there was none of this talk the previous day.”
Similar statements were made by the son of a leading Brotherhood figure who also spoke to Mada Masr under condition of anonymity. “There is torture that goes on in the sit-in, but I was surprised to find out about it. I’ve since seen it—the amputations, the electrocution—that stuff is real. But it is not condoned, nor an official position. There’s little supervision on the sit-in and things can get out of hand.”
The son—who claims to no longer be a member of the group—feels the need to point out that “the Brothers who got arrested while taking a torture victim to the hospital, they were the ones who actually freed that man from the square—they’re my friends, that’s how I found out about all this.”
But these claims do little to placate those who survived what can be considered much milder abuses at the heart of the Islamist sit-in. “I was called an infidel countless times,” he says. “The enthusiasm displayed by [those men] for verbal and physical abuse is incredible, and that’s what upset me the most—that and the fact that there was nothing to justify their behavior. In fact, it seemed like they wanted to provoke something from us—to have us give them a reason.”
Between repeated calls by significant segments of the population for the clearing of the Islamist sit-ins, echoed in ultimatums by the Armed Forces and proposals by the government—the most recent of which being a siege to “starve out” the protestors—members of the sit-in likely feel they already have all the reasons they need to in order to justify their stance. Others, including Badr, disagree. “A true Islamist state—like the one they claim to have created in Rabaa—would accept people and invite conversation,” he suggests. “Instead, they reject both.”


Bomb explodes at #Egypt police station, 15 officers hurt #Mansoura GRAPHIC

A bomb exploded at a police station in a province north of Cairo early on Wednesday, wounding five police officers, two security sources told Reuters.
Unknown assailants threw the bomb from a passing car in Mansoura, the capital of Dakhalia province, they said.
The explosion occurred after a day of clashes between opponents and Islamist supporters of Egypt's deposed president, Mohamed Mursi, killed nine people in Cairo.
انفجار قنبلة أمام قسم أول المنصورةانفجار قنبلة أمام قسم أول المنصورةانفجار قنبلة أمام قسم أول المنصورةانفجار قنبلة أمام قسم أول المنصورةانفجار قنبلة أمام قسم أول المنصورة


Al Qaeda Leader in #Yemen Might Really Be Dead This Time

Said al-Shihri, the second-in-command of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), has reportedly been killed. But unlike previous (and premature) reports of his death -- and there have been many -- this time the news came straight from the source, in an announcement by AQAP. Maybe this time Shihri will actually stay dead.
Shihri, who also went by the kunya Abu Sufyan al-Azdi, was a veteran jihadist who had operated in Afghanistan and Chechnya by the time he was captured by U.S. forces in December 2001. He was held for several years at Guantánamo Bay, but was released after attending a rehabilitation program in Saudi Arabia. Four months after his release, Shihri appeared in a video announcing the formation of AQAP, with him as deputy emir to former Osama bin Laden aide Nasir al-Wuhayshi. He is believed to have helped plan AQAP's 2009 assassination attempt against Saudi Prince Muhammad bin Nayef, and has been an aggressive fundraiser for the organization, sometimes to the chagrin of bin Laden and al Qaeda's core leadership. Documents recovered from bin Laden's Abbottabad safehouse included a letter criticizing Shihri's efforts and requesting that AQAP start clearing its press releases with other al Qaeda leaders.

Shihri died in a U.S. drone strike in Yemen's northern Saada province, according to AQAP's video announcement. AQAP has a known presence in the area and has clashed with the Houthi movement, which controls much of the province. When Shihri was last reported dead, in January, the Yemeni government also attributed the cause of death to an airstrike in Saada.
AQAP's message was delivered by Ibrahim al-Rubaysh, AQAP's chief theologian -- and a Saudi and Gitmo veteran like Shihri -- who was rumored to be in line to succeed Shihri as AQAP's number two when Shihri was last reported killed in January. But Rubaysh's announcement on Wednesday did not include any mention of who might succeed the group's deputy.


Terrorism has no religion only in #Egypt government

الارهاب لا دين لة فقط فى مصر لة حكومة
Terrorism has no religion only in Egypt government


How to Defeat Cyber Jihad

A great paradox of the conflict with al Qaeda is that the terrorists, largely driven by 14th century Islamist ideology, make such skillful use of 21st century information technology. Whether to tell their story of a sacred mission to reduce the shadow cast by American power over the Muslim world, to motivate recruits to join the jihad, or to provide a form of "distance learning" in terrorist tradecraft, al Qaeda operatives have made extensive use of cyberspace-based connectivity. And somehow, after more than a decade of being so relentlessly hunted, they still enjoy the largely unobstructed use of this virtual haven. It is just as important as their somewhat harried physical havens in the mountains of Waziristan, Yemen, and a few other remote fastnesses.

The Boston bombing once again reminded the world of the benefits al Qaeda reaps from cyberspace, as it appears that the Tsarnaev brothers were radicalized and trained via jihadist websites. In this they were hardly alone. The London bombings in 2005 (which killed 52), the fizzled Glasgow Airport attack in 2007, the foiled plot against Fort Dix in 2007, Nidal Hasan's rampage at Fort Hood in 2009 (which killed 13), and the failed attempt to bring down a Northwest Airlines plane that same year all featured terrorists who made extensive use of online motivational and training materials. Information from and links to websites of the late Anwar al-Awlaki -- killed in a drone strike in 2011 -- and Abu Mus'ab al-Suri were found in each of these cases. 

While al-Awlaki's influence as a propagandist seems to have died with him, al-Suri's strategic concept about the rise of a "leaderless network" of small jihadist cells -- thoroughly exposited in his 1,600-page web tract, The Global Islamic Resistance Call -- has become a principal al Qaeda playbook. He was taken into custody several years ago, interrogated by American intelligence personnel, then "rendered" to the Syrians, of all people. From there the trail goes dark, save for the tantalizing message from the Assad regime, released shortly after the start of the uprising, that he had been released. Who knows? The important point is that his blueprint is the one being followed. It is what to watch for: the rise of little terrorist teams in unexpected places. Not particularly skillful jihadists -- there are limits to how much can be learned online -- but motivated, dedicated, and skilled enough to cause damage that captures world attention. 

The questions now before the global counterterrorist coalition are the same ones that have resonated for the past decade, but are now perhaps more urgently voiced in the wake of Boston: How is online jihad to be stopped? Can al Qaeda be driven from its virtual haven in cyberspace? The United States has played a leading role in strategy formulation, focusing primarily on efforts to present and disseminate a more moderate view of Islam, as well as to highlight the heinous acts of the terrorists. The simple problem with each of these efforts is that neither works. Over 95 percent of the world's 1.3 billion Muslims already reject al Qaeda and other extremists -- but the jihadists don't need massive popular support to fill their ranks, just a sliver of Islamic society, still numbering in the many tens of millions, from which to draw recruits. Our moderate messaging won't sway them. With regard to highlighting acts of terror, the jihadist rebuttal -- featuring scathing indictments of the invasion of Iraq, abuse at Abu Ghraib, the killings of innocents by drones, and more -- has proved quite effective.
As to attempts to disrupt or shut down jihadist websites, these too are ineffective, perhaps even counterproductive, undertakings. It is all too easy for material on sites that have been shut down to pop up again quickly on new sites. This sort of cat-and-mouse game has been going on for many years, with all too little to show for the effort. Besides, many intelligence professionals make the point that there is more to be learned from keeping these sites up and monitoring them than from taking them down. Clearly, though, not enough is being learned about al Qaeda's intentions, about the identities of potential recruits, or even, after all these years, about money flows. If intelligence gleaned from cyberspace had given the counterterrorist coalition anything like the "information edge" enjoyed by the Allies against the Axis powers in World War II, the age of terror would already be over.
Perhaps it is time to follow the example of the British "boffins" of Bletchley Park. They broke the codes of the German Enigma cipher device and enabled great victories -- even at a time when the Nazis still held the material advantage in the war. In that conflict, some 70 years ago, the key was to create the world's first high-performance computer. Today, at a "New Bletchley Park," the challenge would be not so much to crack a complex code as to discern ways to "back hack" and geo-locate both those posting jihadist information and those accessing it. The first boffins included mathematicians, chess masters, even magicians -- among many others. Twenty-first century boffins would no doubt require master hackers, software designers, and probably still chess (and Go) masters -- and magicians, too.
Several years ago, I met with senior intelligence officials to pitch the case for a New Bletchley Park. No dice. They were already doing just fine, I was told. I then took the matter up inside the Pentagon, finally reaching a then-serving member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He was very supportive of the concept, and expressed concern that jihadists were being "given a free ride in cyberspace." But he felt that the matter had to be carried forward by...the intelligence community. No joy. Fast forward to the present: The old three-prong strategy of website-based observation, ideological disputation, and selected site disruption continues, despite the fact that al Qaeda still enjoys that virtual free ride.
At a time when it is glaringly apparent that post-bin Laden terrorist networks will thrive, rise up, and strike at the world, largely thanks to their continuing confidence in being able to rely on web-based connectivity for recruitment and training, it is simply unacceptable for the counterterrorist alliance to continue to pursue a strategic approach that clearly does not work. Maybe senior leaders should convene a meeting at Bletchley Park, where the unquiet ghosts of the boffins may scare some sense into them.  


#Muslim_Brotherhood leader points to conspiracy behind #Boston bombing

A common criticism of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood has always been that it delivers one message in English to an international audience, and another message entirely in Arabic to its domestic audience. If anyone is ever looking for an example of this, they need to look no further than the Islamist organization's reaction to the bombing of the Boston Marathon.
In English, the Brotherhood's political party released a statement "categorically reject[ing] as intolerable the bombings committed in the U.S. city of Boston," and "offer[ing] heartfelt sympathies and solemn condolences to the American people and the families of the victims."
In Arabic, senior Brotherhood leader and the vice chairman of the group's political party Essam el-Erian took a different tack. In a post on his Facebook page, he condemned the Boston attack -- but also linked it to the French war in Mali, the destruction in Syria and Iraq, and faltering rapprochement between the Turkish government and Kurdish rebels.
El-Erian is making the case that all of these setbacks -- from Boston to Baghdad -- are somehow connected. "Who disturbed democratic transformations, despite the difficult transition from despotism, corruption, poverty, hatred, and intolerance to freedom, justice tolerance, development, human dignity, and social justice?" he asked. "Who planted Islamophobia through research, the press, and the media? Who funded the violence?"
El-Erian just poses those questions -- he doesn't accuse any specific group of masterminding the Boston Marathon attack or the unrest across the Middle East. But while Brotherhood leaders feel free to indulge in such conspiracy-mongering in Arabic, these claims are notably absent from the group's English-language media. islam
Spencer Platt/Getty Images