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Egypt's 'unfinished revolution,' reported from the ground in Cairo.

Ayman Nour speaks about disqualification from Egyptian presidential election

EXCLUSIVE: The expected contender lost a court decision, but said it won't keep him from running.
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Dr. Ayman Nour speaks to journalists in Cairo after his conviction was upheld by an Egypt court. (Ben Brody/GlobalPost)

In his first public appearance since a Cairo court upheld his 2005 forgery conviction, Egyptian opposition figure Ayman Nour warned that Egypt’s revolution is dangerously close to unraveling into a military coup.

Speaking to a small group of GlobalPost/Open Hands Initiative reporting fellows, Nour said the “dream of a civil state” is slipping away as the military tightens its grip on the country.


Activist 'Sandmonkey' running for Egyptian parliament

Mahmoud Salem, pro-democracy activist and blogger, wants to push Egypt forward via official channels.
Mahmoud Salem, aka "Sandmonkey," in Cairo's Tahrir Square, July 2011. (Gigi Ibrahim/Courtesy)

Mahmoud Salem, a loud, sarcastic character who self-identifies as a "new media douchebag," is best known by his Twitter handle: Sandmonkey.

On Monday he announced he's running for Egypt's parliament as an independent candidate. His mission: Finish the revolution he and other Egyptians started.

Candidate registration for the first parliamentary election in Egypt after the January uprising is now in full swing. The election is scheduled for Nov. 28.


Dr. ElBaradei, you call this a press conference?

Mohamed ElBaradei’s presser leaves much to be desired.
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Egyptian presidential candidate Mohamed ElBaradei held a press conference on October 16, one week after the death of 27 people at Maspero. (Matt Negrin/GlobalPost)

The most urgent question I had at Mohamed ElBaradei’s press conference was, Where can I find the hummus?

Unfortunately my question was never answered.

We arrived at the presidential candidate’s Q&A 45 minutes early to get good seats and prepare. The campaign office we walked into was small and bare, as if it had been vacated in haste that morning. There was nothing on the walls; scattered papers and an occasional laptop sat on desks that appeared to be placed randomly in empty rooms.


At popular arts center, Egyptian youth crave political insight

Post-revolutionary fervor infuses politics into art as Egyptians express new freedoms.
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Mohamed El Sawy at his El Sawy Culturewheel in the Zemalek neighborhood of Cairo, October 2011. (Laura El-Tantawy/GlobalPost)

CAIRO — El Sawy Culturewheel had traditionally been an open venue where artists could exhibit splashes of color while musicians tested out their music on open-minded crowds. Until the revolution, it was a largely apolitical place.

But the Culturewheel — which draws more than 20,000 people per month — has become a different kind of place since January, said founder Mohamed El Sawy.


The night Maspero turned into a war zone: A firsthand account

One week after the bloodbath, an uneasy feeling hangs on Cairo.
Nearly 3,000 Egyptian mourners gather in in Cairo's Tahrir Square on October 15, 2011 for a candlelight vigil in honor of Coptic Christians among 27 people killed during a demonstration over an attack on a church. Egypt's ruling military approved on October 15 a law to punish discrimination. (Mahmud Hams/AFP/Getty Images)

CAIRO — On the first Sunday after a military crackdown on a protest against the burning of a Christian community center killed 27 people last week, Coptic Christians are gathering to pray for the dead and the country seems increasingly united in a belief that the Egyptian Army is not the steward of the revolution that so many once hoped it would be.


Dusty desperation in old Cairo

A drastic drop in tourism post-revolution has Cairenes "walking in the dark."
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Lightly trafficked stands line the narrow streets of Islamic Cairo in October 2011. Tourism is down 25 percent this year and some vendors are losing hope. (Elizabeth D. Herman/GlobalPost)

Selma Mohammed turned up the volume on her radio, a vintage hand-me-down from her uncle, shutting out Cairo’s Friday afternoon din. The achy lyrics of iconic Egyptian singer Abdel Halim Hafez blared from her kiosk, perched atop a meandering artery leading into the heart of Cairo’s famous bazaar, Khan El-Khalili. A pastiche of lollipops, Kool-Aid, and plastic children’s toys imported from China lay jumbled before her.


Egypt: The revolution will not be Americanized

A long history of U.S. aid to the Mubarak regime doesn't sit well with Egyptians.
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Human Rights Watch researcher Heba Morayef and Brookings Doha Center Director of Research Shadi Hamid discuss shifts in Egyptian society with GlobalPost / Open Hands Initiative "Covering a Revolution" fellows in Cairo, October 2011. (Kim Badawi/GlobalPost)

CAIRO — Is the United States facing a moment of atonement in Egypt?
For decades, American administrations sent money to Cairo and supported Hosni Mubarak’s regime. Now that the hard-liner is gone, says the political scientist Shadi Hamid, President Obama has a chance to show the Egyptian public that the United States is willing to make up for backing a repressive authority.


Egypt's path to democracy hits a detour

Analyst Amr Hamzawy says the military might stay in power, even if the people elect a civilian president.
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Egyptian political analyst Amr Hamzawy, recently announced parliamentary candidate. (Ben Brody/GlobalPost)

CAIRO — So how will Egypt navigate its transition from the protests of Tahrir Square to forming a new government?

Amr Hamzawy, a leading political analyst who this week announced his own candidacy for parliament, has always been one of the more sought-after experts here on analyzing what lies ahead.

The scenario Hamzawy painted Friday at a gathering in Cairo for the GlobalPost-Open Hands Initiative reporting fellowship for Egyptian and American journalists was gloomy at best. Here’s how he sees the situation unfolding:


Away from the APCs: A walk in Islamic Cairo

An Egyptian journalist visits old Cairo for the first time, a much-needed break from the demands of 2011's news cycle.
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GlobalPost / Open Hands Initiative "Covering a Revolution" fellow Mai Shams El-Din at Khan El-Khalili in Cairo, October 2011. (Ben Brody/GlobalPost)

CAIRO — For an Egyptian journalist like myself, completely consumed with the adventurous yet painful daily routine of reporting the hard-hitting news here over the past 10 months, a walk in Islamic Cairo with a group of reporting fellows is definitely a blessing.


Ahmed Maher: A revolutionary, not a presidential candidate

The April 6 Youth Movement leader says he won't be running for office despite some popular support.
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Ramy Raoof (L) and Ahmed Maher (R) speak at the Open Hands Initiative / GlobalPost 'Covering a Revolution' seminar in Cairo, October 2011. (Ben Brody/GlobalPost)

Ahmed Maher, the 30-year-old civil engineer who brought the hordes of people to Tahrir Square in January for a legendary protest that ended in Hosni Mubarak’s ouster, is no politician.

At least, not yet.