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WHAT WE DO
While there are now more than 500 Arabic and Persian language news outlets reporting stories from and about the Middle East, there is currently no affordable means for English speakers to gain access to much of this content. As a result, the overwhelming majority of English speaking businesspersons, students, journalists and others who have an interest in the affairs of the region are largely unaware of what the Middle East media is covering and how they are covering these stories.

Mideastwire.com aims to close this gap by offering a daily email newsletter of concise, translated briefs covering some of the key political, cultural, economic and opinion pieces appearing in the media of the 22 Arab countries, Iran and the Arab Diaspora. Through this effort, we hope to address at least one element of a global disconnect that continues to threaten a wide spectrum of socio-political and economic relationships, both here in the region and beyond.
TODAY’S DAILY BRIEFING
04-May-2016
Egypt
Opinion
“Es-Sisi and the inevitable confrontation”  (Newspaper - Middle East)
Governmental Reform - Media
On April 30, the independent Egyptian Al-Bawaba newspaper carried the following opinion piece by Dr. Amr Abdul Sami’: “The wide-scale attack targeting Egypt and President Abdul Fattah es-Sisi needs to be discussed today, not tomorrow, as it is targeting the political project which we have supported, and for the implementation of which we have dedicated our national effort, i.e. the “New Egypt Project.” As much as we recognize... that Egypt is subject to a real conspiracy, which Es-Sisi himself recently called “demonic,” we must go over the elements of shortcoming that led to the intensification of the threats we are facing, and once again subjected Egypt to the risk of seeing the collapse of the state institutions and the country’s slide towards an anarchy that can neither be contained nor controlled. These elements are as follows… (Read More)
“Is there an international body pursuing the Egyptians?”  (Al-Quds al-Arabi)
Arab Diplomacy - Judicial Affairs
On May 4, the Qatari-owned Al-Quds al-Arabi daily carried the following lead editorial: “Yesterday on Tuesday, the Egyptian Foreign Ministry announced it had received a notice saying that the body of an Egyptian citizen had been found on the railway track in the Italian city of Napoli. The Ministry also stated there were signs of trauma to the Egyptian victim’s head and jaw. This was preceded by another incident announced on Thursday (April 28) by that same ministry, which summoned the consular officer at the US Embassy in Cairo to demand the uncovering of the criminals involved in the murder of an Egyptian citizen, whose body was found with “torture marks in a large dumpster in the state of Indiana… (Read More)
Jordan
Politics
“Jordan authorities hold cross-border “Jihadi” surrendered by forces of Libyan Khalifa Haftar”  (Al-Quds al-Arabi)   
Arab Diplomacy - Terrorism - USA EU
On May 4, the Qatari-owned Al-Quds al-Arabi daily carried the following report by its correspondent in Amman Tarek al-Fayed: “Reliable sources revealed that the Libyan security bodies led by General Khalifa Haftar recently surrendered to the Jordanian security bodies a Jordanian citizen linked to the Islamic State organization on the Libyan arena, after he had helped Algerian fighters illegally enter Europe by sea in preparation for the staging of terrorist operations, and transported and smuggled heavy arms to the Tunisian and Algerian scenes. According to the charge sheet issued by the Jordanian State Security Court, the accused, M.Z., transported explosives to be used in terrorist acts, collected and transported funds to terrorist groups, and helped individuals carry out terrorist operations… (Read More)
Lebanon
Politics
“Who is stirring the Tripoli Street under the cloak of the Syrian opposition?”  (Ad-Diyyar)
Terrorism - Unrest
On May 4, Jihad Nafeh wrote the following report in the Ad-Diyyar daily newspaper: “Who is working again on stirring the Tripoli Street and reviving the scenes of the sit-ins and protests under the cloak of the “Syrian opposition” in addition to using fabricated war scenes and claiming that these have taken place in Aleppo in order to exploit the human feelings and stir the religious and sectarian instincts?… (Read More)
“What is the backdrop of the Kremlin’s interest in the head of the Future movement…?”  (Ad-Diyyar)
Arab Diplomacy
On May 4, the Ad-Diyyar daily newspaper carried the following report: “Less than an hour following the statement made two days ago by the Russian Ambassador to Lebanon, Alexander Zaspikin, at the conclusion of his meeting with [former] PM Sa’d al-Hariri in Bayt al-Wassat, the phone lines went into a frenzy within a political group and between different levels and directions in an attempt at analyzing the backdrop of the ambassador’s statement. These parties considered that the statements carries some specific indications especially when it comes to “the endeavor of President Vladimir Putin and Minister Sergey Lavrov aimed at developing the dialogue with [former] PM Sa’d al-Hariri in order to enhance the Lebanese-Russian relations.” Zaspikin indicated that “the action concerning the presidential file has been going on for the past phase and we are in contact with all the concerned parties… (Read More)
”Did Al-Rahi visit Nasrallah?”  (Al-Akhbar Lebanon)
Democracy - USA EU
On May 4, the Al-Akhbar daily newspaper carried the following report: “March 14 sources indicated that the Maronite Patriarch, Bechara al-Rahi, visited the Hezbollah Secretary General, Sayed Hassan Nasrallah, two weeks ago following his meeting with French President, Francois Hollande, in order to discuss the presidential file in light of the suggestion that was reportedly made by Bkirki with respect to reducing the presidential term to a two-year transitional phase… (Read More)
“Aoun is reassured that the time factor is in his favor”  (Newspaper - Middle East)   
Democracy
On May 4, the pro-March 14 privately-owned Al-Joumhouria newspaper carried the following report by As’ad Bechara: “On the beat of the battles in Aleppo and the developments on the field, the presidential optimism and pessimism stocks are rising and dropping, while awaiting a settlement that has become far-fetched following the obstruction of the Geneva Conference, which has turned into a security committee tasked to enhance the frail truce. It is no longer a secret that the Lebanese solution, especially the presidential one, is linked to what will happen in Syria, while it is clear that Prime Minister Sa’d al-Hariri’s nomination of Deputy Suleiman Frangieh, followed by Dr. Samir Geagea’s nomination of General Michel Aoun, did not alter the position of Hezbollah, which not only wants the victory of a president who is an ally, but also the demarcation of a new stage, in which it might seek additional gains to compensate for the high price it has paid in Syria… (Read More)
Middle East
Opinion
“$1 billion for the anti-Arab Iranian media”  (Al-Hayat)
Media
On May 3, the Saudi-owned London-based Al-Hayat newspaper carried the following opinion piece by Akal al-Akal: “Khamenei’s revolution in Iran mastered [the media game] and was aware of the importance of the media’s role, thus relying on cassette tapes to promote its political discourse against the regime of the Shah. And it secured a great success in that. The regime in Iran did not forget the importance of the media, and though its shape was altered, its content remained the same, focusing on dominating the Arab surrounding that features many lose regions, particularly sectarian minorities which were used against the other Arab political forces, while believing that Iran was defending the Arabs’ causes, particularly the Palestinian cause. And whoever follows the Arabic-speaking Iranian outlets, such as Al-Alam, Al-Manar and Al-Mayadeen, would notice the strong presence of that cause… (Read More)
Palestine
Opinion
“How are the Palestinians confronting the West Bank’s annexation?”  (Website)
Peace Process
On May 4, the electronic Rai al-Youm newspaper carried the following piece by Fayez Abou Shamala: “The talk about confronting the project of annexing the West Bank will remain useless unless the Palestinian people were to take a stand, revisit the previous political phase, and hold the people in charge responsible. Otherwise, lies will prevail and losing the land will be the natural outcome of [the politics of] silence or applause. The head of the settlement council in the West Bank, Shila Eldar, said that the Israeli parliament (the Knesset) will soon pass a draft law to annex the occupied Bank to Israel and that he obtained pledges from the Likud ministers and MPs as well as the leaders of the “Jewish Home” Party indicating that a draft law will be put in place to annex the West Bank with this draft law being a top priority for the parliamentary blocs… (Read More)
Saudi Arabia
Business
“Saudi minister of labor intervenes in payment of salaries of Saudi employees...”  (Al-Quds al-Arabi)   
On May 4, the Qatari-owned Al-Quds al-Arabi daily carried the following report by its correspondent in Riyadh: “When Saudi Minister of Labor Mufrej al-Haqbani said he will try to solve the problem of the largest Saudi contracting company “Saudi Binladin Group,” it was believed that relief had come for more than 120,000 employees and workers in the company that is suffering from financial strains, and that the minister will intervene to ensure the disbursement of the company’s financial dues, so that it is able to pay the salaries of its employees and the compensations of those whose services were relinquished. But following the press statements he delivered yesterday, the public learned that the minister, who should be protective of the rights of the workers from whichever nationality, only cared about the rights of the Saudi employees in the company… (Read More)
Politics
“Ben Salman swallows ‘Bin Laden:’ Al-Riyadh dismantles contracting giant”  (Al-Akhbar Lebanon)
On May 4, the Al-Akhbar daily newspaper carried the following report: “…A few days following the announcement made by the Saudi Deputy Crown Prince, Mohammad Ben Salman, concerning his economic vision, the “Kingdom Vision 2030,” the world was taken aback by the announcement made by the giant Saudi contractor, the “Bin Laden Group” about sacking 77,000 foreign workers and 12,000 out of the 17,000 Saudi nationals who work for the company in positions revolving between administrative officials to engineers and supervisors… (Read More)
Syria
Politics
“Washington encircles solo adventures in Syria”  (As-Safir)
Arab Diplomacy - Peace Process - Terrorism - USA EU
On May 4, the independent, leftist As-Safir daily newspaper carried the following report by Wassim Ibrahim: “The hidden part of the American-Russian agreements are a source of concern for Washington’s anti-Syrian regime allies especially since what they do know about these agreements is only making them more frustrated… The campaign against ISIL is witnessing a new phase under the headline of the European involvement in dispatching Special Forces to Syria according to a prominent European source who is widely informed about the European military actions. The source told As-Safir that “there are special operation forces that have been dispatched by some European countries to Syria.” He then added that “these forces have been on the ground in Syria for a while now but since this is a sensitive matter, they preferred not to announce it.” The source did not want to say which countries were involved in this step. He however implicitly refer to France and Britain… (Read More)
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