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Egypt launches new initiative to support tourism

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Egyptian Minister of Petroleum Tarek El-Molla announced on Tuesday a reduction in aviation fuel prices, as part of a government initiative to support the country’s tourism sector.

In an official statement, El-Molla conveyed that the programme would cut aviation fuel prices to 15 cents per gallon, adding that it would go into effect “starting on 21 January until the end of the year.”

“The initiative comes as part of the Egyptian government’s efforts to revive the country’s tourism and aviation sectors as they plunged following the outbreak of the novel coronavirus,” the minister pointed out.

Egyptian Minister of Tourism Khaled El-Anany told reporters that the move would increase tourist influx to Egypt through: “Stimulating international air carriers to increase the number of daily trips to Egypt’s tourist destinations. The civil aviation activity has a direct impact on the Egyptian tourism sector.”

The Egyptian tourism sector – one of Egypt’s primary sources of foreign currency and a major pillar of economic growth – has been significantly affected by the coronavirus after air traffic was restricted to limit the spread of the virus.

READ: Financial crises, corruption cripple Egypt plans to develop rural areas

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Tunisian president’s office received letter with suspicious powder

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The office of Tunisia’s president has received a letter containing suspicious powder and is investigating the matter, a source there told Reuters on Wednesday.

President Kais Saied did not open the letter and is in good health, the source said, Reuters reports.

Some local websites reported that the lethal toxin ricin had been found in the envelope, and that it had been addressed to the presidency in the Carthage Palace.

The source in the office declined to comment on the reports.

Factional tensions have been growing within the government, amid protests against widespread unemployment and social inequality.

Tunisia: Ghannouchi affirms right to demonstrate ‘peacefully’

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Egypt authorities launch investigation into school allegedly turned into a brothel

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Egypt authorities have launched an investigation into a school that was allegedly turned into a brothel, reports The New Arab.

Seven people at the school were charged after the director of the school accused the guard of facilitating a six-month prostitution operation.

The news was announced by Sisi ally and TV anchor Amr Adeeb.

In April last year, 10 women and six men were arrested after being accused of taking part in an orgy in a gym in the Nozha neighbourhood of Cairo.

egyThe Egyptian authorities have started an increased crackdown on a number of people on immorality charges.

READ: 18 days

In particular, it has targeted female influencers for what is says is violating family values and debauchery.

Following the Fairmont Hotel rape incident, three female witnesses to the gang rape were arrested and investigated for drug abuse, inciting debauchery and participating in an orgy.

Earlier this month, Egyptian security services arrested a chef that made cakes in the shape of male and female private parts for a birthday party in Al-Jazirah Club.

One source in the security forces said that it was “incitement to immorality.”

The state-run press reported that members of the club complained that the party goers and party organiser should be arrested.

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Gaddafi’s daughter-in-law knocks down Syrian policemen and pedestrians

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The daughter-in-law of former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi is reported to have driven into and knocked over pedestrians and policemen in the Syrian capital Damascus, Al-Modon has reported. Aline Skaf is said to have been drunk when the car she was driving hit two policemen on Sunday.

Skaf is married to the late Libyan dictator’s youngest son, Hannibal Gaddafi. The 40-year-old is a former Lebanese lingerie model. It is alleged that she parked illegally on a side street when a policeman arrived and began issuing her with a ticket. Her security guards waiting in another car then attacked the officer. When more police arrived, Skaf drove her car into the officers and bystanders, injuring two policemen and three pedestrians.

As her security guards continued to beat the policemen and bystanders, Skaf is reported to have screamed at and insulted onlookers while threatening to run over more of them. The incident ended when a senior Syrian regime official showed up and, according to eyewitnesses, ordered the policemen to stand down and allowed Skaf to drive away.

The intervention of the official and the fact that Skaf got away with assaulting police officers has shocked and angered even pro-regime figures such as Syrian journalist Suhaib Al-Masri. “The woman [Skaf] was released after running over and attacking policemen because a higher-up had got involved,” he wrote on social media. “People are not flies — they can’t be run over and then the whole story is forgotten.”

The UAE-based Syrian fashion designer Manal Ajaj also condemned the incident on Facebook. “Who is this official who has no problem with a policeman being dragged and humiliated by a woman with no respect?” she asked. “If you’re the daughter of a former president and you live here as a political refugee, you’re welcome but you have to respect people and respect the country which opened its doors to you.”

READ: Gaddafi’s son reveals details about his abduction from Syria

Hannibal Gaddafi and Skaf escaped from Libya in 2011 as the uprising erupted against his father’s. They found refuge in neighbouring Algeria before moving to Oman after being granted political asylum there a year later.

They then moved to Syria, which also granted them political asylum. Gaddafi’s son was kidnapped and detained in Lebanon in December 2015. He was charged over the mysterious disappearance of Shia cleric Moussa Al-Sadr in Libya in 1978. Syria’s appeals to have him released have been rejected by Lebanon. Skaf, meanwhile, remains in Syria where she lives as a political refugee.

The couple married in 2003 and are notorious for their controversial activities and human rights abuses. The Swiss authorities arrested them in 2008 for beating and abusing staff in a Geneva hotel. In 2009, police in London also arrested Hannibal Gaddafi for domestic abuse.

Before they fled in 2011, Skaf punished the family’s Ethiopian nanny by pouring boiling water on her head for refusing to beat and silence their crying child. The nanny, Shweyga Mulla, was found by rebel forces having been abandoned by the couple at one of their luxury villas in Tripoli. She had severe burns and injuries to her head and body. Libyan rebels discovered thousands of images and videos of yachts, family holidays and the torture of prisoners on Hannibal Gaddafi’s tablet device which he left behind when he fled.

READ: The Axis of Torture was taught by a Nazi and is likely to grow

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