Category Archives: English

The EU’s Blacklisting of Hezbollah: Grandstanding or Game-changer?

Commentary by Bart Hesseling – 25 July 2013

hezbOn 22 July, the European Union’s 28 foreign ministers unanimously decided to place the ‘military wing’ of the Lebanese Hezbollah on a list of what it considers terrorist organizations, to loud cheers from Washington and Tel Aviv. It is a classic case of coherent policy giving way to political expediency. Beyond the political posturing, it doesn’t help to improve the situation in the countries directly affected, Syria and Lebanon. Continue reading

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Filed under English, Foreign Policy & IR, Lebanon & Syria

Does Morsi’s Ousting Signify a Blow to the Israeli-Palestinian Peace Process?

Commentary by Romana Michelon – 19 July 2013

An Egyptian soldier stands guard on a watch tower on the border between Israel and Egypt (Source: Reuters/  Ronen Zvulun)

An Egyptian soldier stands guard on a watch tower on the border between Israel and Egypt (Source: Reuters/ Ronen Zvulun)

A little over a year ago, the world’s eyes were fixated on Egypt. Following the huge popular demonstrations that led to the fall of Hosni Mubarak, on June 24, 2012, Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated Mohammed Morsi won the election, and became the country’s first democratically elected President. Egypt was in the spotlight again two weeks ago when, following over a year of popular unrest and growing exasperation, a military coup led to the ouster of Morsi and the installment of Constitutional Court Judge Adly Mansour as interim-president. What will happen next remains a great unknown. The international community expects the new regime to keep its promise and organize democratic elections as soon as possible. In the meantime, Egypt still runs the risk of entering into full-blown civil conflict, as certain elements among Morsi’s supporters have vowed to violently oppose the expulsion of their President. Continue reading

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Filed under Arab Spring, Egypt, English

Interview with Egyptian Lawyer Karim Hafez (Part II): The Challenges of Establishing a Premier Law Practice in Egypt

Interview by Tamer Mallat – 2 July 2013

Karim Hafez

Karim Hafez

Karim Hafez is one of the leading lawyers in the Middle East, and is Senior Partner and founder of Hafez Law Firm, a premier trial firm and arbitration practice based out of Cairo, Egypt with offices in Paris, Doha and Jeddah. He obtained his PhD in law from Cambridge University, and has held teaching positions at Harvard Law School and the American University in Cairo, where he is currently Adjunct Professor of Law. ArabsThink has had the opportunity to interview Karim Hafez about his experience in practicing law in Egypt and on Egypt’s dangerous economic situation (Part I, click here for interview). The interview was conducted in June 2013. Continue reading

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Interview with Egyptian Lawyer Karim Hafez (Part I): A Lawyer’s Perspective on Egypt’s Economic Woes

Interview by Tamer Mallat – 2 July 2013

Karim Hafez

Karim Hafez

Karim Hafez is one of the leading lawyers in the Middle East, and is Senior Partner and founder of Hafez Law Firm, a premier trial firm and arbitration practice based out of Cairo, Egypt with offices in Paris, Doha and Jeddah. He obtained his PhD in law from Cambridge University, and has held teaching positions at Harvard Law School and the American University in Cairo, where he is currently Adjunct Professor of Law. ArabsThink  had the opportunity to interview Karim Hafez about his experience in practicing law in Egypt (Part II, click here for interview) and on Egypt’s dangerous economic situation. The interview was conducted in June 2013. Continue reading

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The Egyptian Constitution: Looking Beyond Seasonal Forecasts

Commentary by Emilie Sickinghe – 5 February 2013

An Egyptian man casts his vote during a referendum on the new Egyptian constitution at a polling station on December 15, 2012 in Cairo, Egypt. Source: edition.cnn.com

An Egyptian man casts his vote during a referendum on the new Egyptian constitution at a polling station on December 15, 2012 in Cairo, Egypt. Source: edition.cnn.com

Back in January 2011, the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions focussed the world’s attention on the Arab world once again: was an unexpected democratic Spring finally dawning on the region? Two years later, euphoria has given way to anxiety and the world seems to be experiencing Arab Spring fatigue. Syria is embroiled in a brutal civil conflict; as was Libya; Yemen is in the middle of a precarious transition; no fundamental changes have occurred in most other Arab countries (yes, back to business for the rulers left standing); and on top of all that comes… Egypt. Many hopes had been raised for the first Arab Spring country to produce a new constitution. By the end of 2012, all eyes were on Egypt again. The media storm blazed at full strength. President Morsy even landed in the top-ten person-of-the-year list of TIME Magazine. But the keyword was not “Spring” anymore. After Morsi’s autocratic manoeuvres, the newly adopted constitution bitterly disappointed those striving for a genuine democratic state. Continue reading

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The Underside of Revolution

Essay by Tamer Mallat – 30 January 2013

Execution Metairie

Execution of the Métairie sisters, Nantes 1793 (Debay)

The passing of two years since the beginning of the January 25 Revolution, has done nothing to diminish the ardor of its obstinate partisans. What started as an adjuration for increased rights, dignity, and other such claims of modest, albeit essential substance, has in the course of two tumultuous years, been lost to a cacophony of superseding contradictions bereft of meaning and direction. The nonviolent revolution that came to mark the coming of age of the peoples of the Middle East and North Africa has undergone, in many cases, a severe metamorphosis. The contradiction and evolution lies in the shift from a historicist paradigm to one devoid of trajectory and vice versa, or the simultaneous confusion of both.  Continue reading

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(Post)-Revolutionary Politics in Egypt: an Interview with Amr Hamzawy

Interview – 18 November 2012

Amr Hamzawy
source: algareda.com

Dr. Amr Hamzawy, former MP for Heliopolis, founder and president of the Egypt Freedom Party, is professor of political science at the American University in Cairo, and author of several books, including “Between Religion and Politics” (co-authored with Nathan Brown, 2010) and “Civil Society in the Middle East” (2003). He tweets @HamzawyAmr. Augustin Sabran spoke with him for ArabsThink. Augustin wrote an earlier article on constitutional politics in Egypt. Continue reading

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