Culture – Daily News Egypt Egypt’s Only Daily Independent Newspaper In English Tue, 20 Nov 2018 21:09:15 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Picasso’s found painting suspected to be fake Tue, 20 Nov 2018 17:39:21 +0000 Painting stolen among many other famous paintings in Rotterdam in 2012

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A painting that the Romanian Prosecutor claimed last Sunday to be a work by Pablo Picasso that was stolen in 2012, was proven to be fake, and was most likely created as a publicity stunt, according to Reuters.

Based on Dutch media, Reuters reported that that local media cited author Frank Westerman who helped turn out the painting entitled “Tête d’Arlequin” (Harlequin’s Head) to the police last Sunday, while stating that it is not original.

Westerman told local media that he had received a mail from a theatre company preparing a play about a famous art forgery which stated that the painting is a “forgery hidden as part of an elaborate hoax.”

A former museum curator which had the real paining, also told Dutch television that the pictures he had seen of the found painting proves it is not identical to the one the museum had.

The Romanian Prosecutor who stated on Sunday that authorities are working on verifying the authenticity of the paining was not reachable, after the painting was announced to be fake.

The painting was stolen among many other famous paintings in Rotterdam in 2012. A Romanian man with partners were convicted of the robbery, however, the stolen objects were never found by authorities.

Among the stolen paintings were several famous portraits including Matisse’s “La Liseuse en Blanc et Jaune”, Monet’s “Waterloo Bridge, London” and “Charing Cross Bridge, London”.

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German actor among International Emmy Awards winners Tue, 20 Nov 2018 13:39:00 +0000 The post German actor among International Emmy Awards winners appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Anna Schudt has won the International Emmy Award in the best actress category, while another nominated German drama left empty-handed.Actress Anna Schudt won the International Emmy Award on Monday for her portrayal of real-life comedian Gaby Köster in the TV movie Ein Schnupfen hätte auch gereicht (The Sniffles Would Have Been Just Fine), based on an autobiography by the same title written by Köster.

Köster is a popular German TV comedian who had to interrupt her career in 2008 after suffering a stroke, but didn't let its physically debilitating effects deter her.

While Anna Schudt is a renowned stage actress, however, Germans know her best as commissioner Martina Bönisch in the cult crime series Tatort. She is part of the Dortmund team of detectives, alongside Jörg Hartmann in the role of commissioner Peter Faber.

Read more: Germany's longest-running soap to end in 2020: What made Lindenstrasse so popular?

Other leading awards for Europe

The top male acting award went to Denmark's Lars Mikkelsen for his role in Ride Upon the Storm.

The UK production Man in an Orange Shirt picked up the Emmy in the best movie / miniseries category, winning over Germany's nominated neo-Nazi drama, Toter Winkel (Dead Angle). The top drama series award went to Spain's Money Heist.

The 46th annual ceremony for the International Emmy Awards was held on Monday evening in New York. The awards, bestowed by the International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, recognize the best television programs initially produced and aired outside the United States.

eg/ss (dpa, AFP)

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A rockfall threatens in the Allgäu Alps Tue, 20 Nov 2018 10:27:00 +0000 The post A rockfall threatens in the Allgäu Alps appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

At an altitude of almost 2600 metres, a mountain gradually breaks apart. The meter-sized crack at the top of the Hochvogel is getting bigger and bigger. Experts fear that the summit will soon rush down into the valley.It is one of the most famous mountains in the Allgäu Alps – and could soon be history. According to experts, the summit of the Hochvogel will soon collapse, and according to calculations up to 260,000 cubic metres of rock could fall into the valley. The possible scenario hardly triggers fears among local people: According to the authorities, there is no particular threat to the population.

For years a huge crevice at the summit on the border between Bavaria and Tyrol has been getting bigger and bigger, the first rockfalls have already occurred. Researchers are using sensors to monitor the movement of the massif in order to be able to predict the feared large rockfall.

The crack at the summit is currently 40 metres long, 8 metres deep and 3 metres wide. In the Zugspitze area as well as in two other regions in Austria and Italy, mountain regions threatened by drone flights and measurement technology are also being inspected.

It is unclear whether the Hochvogel summit will actually come to an end with a great deal of noise. "There have been smaller and larger events for years," says Thomas Figl from the Tyrolean State Geological Survey. It is difficult to assess whether the rockfalls will continue step by step or whether the big bang will come.

is/ks (dpa)

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Mythical sex scene fresco discovered in Pompeii Tue, 20 Nov 2018 09:33:00 +0000 The post Mythical sex scene fresco discovered in Pompeii appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

A fresco showing an erotic scene between the god Zeus disguised as a swan and a legendary queen from Greek mythology has been found through new excavations at the ancient Roman city of Pompeii.Archaeologists have discovered a fresco in an ancient Pompeii bedroom that depicts a sensual scene between the Greek god Zeus — or his Roman equivalent, Jupiter — disguised as a swan, and Leda, a legendary Spartan queen from Greek mythology, the Pompeii administration said Monday.

A 'sensual' look

Such iconography showing the mythological figure of Leda being impregnated by the god in swan form was a fairly common decoration in homes in Pompeii and Herculaneum, two towns near present-day Naples that were destroyed in A.D. 79 by the volcanic eruption of Mount Vesuvius.

Still the fresco remains an exceptional find, according to Pompeii archaeological park director Massimo Osanna, who pointed out that Leda was painted in an unusual way, making her look directly at anyone who saw the fresco upon entering the bedroom. "Leda watches the spectator with a sensuality that's absolutely pronounced," Osanna told Italian news agency ANSA.

In the scene, Leda protects the swan with her cloak as the bird sits on her lap. Osanna noted that the fresco celebrates the Greek "myth of love, with an explicit sensuality in a bedroom where, obviously beside sleep, there could be other activities."

Leda is an important figure in Greek mythology. According to myth, the children she had with the god Zeus and a mortal king of Sparta included the beautiful Helen of Troy and the twins Castor and Pollux.

Read more: Street of balconies discovered in Italy's Pompeii

A rich merchant's home?

The bedroom was located near a corridor by the entrance of an upscale domus, or home, where another splendid fresco was discovered earlier this year, said the archaeological park authorities.

The newly-discovered fresco's colors are still remarkably vivid. It emerged Friday through works to consolidate the ancient city's structures after they deteriorated over time, causing some ruins to collapse, the tourist site's officials said.

Pompeii Director Massimo Osanna said one hypothesis is that the home's owner was a rich merchant who wanted to give the impression he was culturally advanced by decorating his house with myth-inspired frescoes.

"The amazing discoveries continue," Osanna posted on Instagram along with a picture of the find.

eg/ss (AP, dpa)

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The Beatles' 'White Album' still a landmark at 50 Mon, 19 Nov 2018 15:13:00 +0000 The post The Beatles' 'White Album' still a landmark at 50 appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Known as the “White Album,” the Beatles’ ninth studio album came out on November 22, 1968. Going beyond the fab four’s LSD psychedelic pop, the iconic work pioneered new musical genres.I found mine under the Christmas tree. I remember discovering the pure white cover, embossed with the letters "The BEATLES" and the number 320733 barely visible on the bottom right.

On the open cover, the titles of the songs were listed on the left side of the double sleeve, alongside four simple black-and-white portraits of John, Paul, George and Ringo on the right. Included in the album was also a large poster of the four musicians with the details of the tracks.

A treasure trove

Most of the 30 tunes on the album are no longer than three minutes — though the shortest track is 52 seconds and the longest one over 8 minutes long. It starts out brilliantly with "Back in the U.S.S.R," followed by tracks featuring variety, harmonies and arrangements that were a true revelation for my young ears at the time — and they keep fascinating me to this day; I still regularly break my fingers trying to play "Blackbird" on the guitar.

I still remember how Germany's radio stations all played "Ob-La-Di-Ob-La-Da" to death in the 1960s, which is why it is not exactly one of my favorite songs. The record offers far more interesting tracks and moves elegantly through genres — folk, rock, country, blues, progressive rock or psychedelic. Delicate acoustic songs like "Julia," "I Will," "Mother Nature's Son" or "Blackbird" alternate with powerfully orchestrated pieces; "Happiness is a Warm Gun" feels like a compact rock opera, contrasting with the earthy "Yer Blues." "Rocky Raccoon" is arguably the first rap song in music history and "Helter Skelter," one of the first hard rock songs ever made.

The Beatles' self-titled work, best known as the White Album, is a gem-filled milestone, which anticipated trends that led to today's pop and rock music. I can even say: Without this record, music wouldn't be what it is today.

A turning point

I was too young at the time to understand the context of this double album released at the end of the "summer of love."

What I know today is that this album was the Beatles' way of saying good-bye to the colorful, drug-filled, flower-power era. With a few exceptions, the music does not feature many of the psychedelic approach of the previous album, Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts' Club Band (which included "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" and "Strawberry Fields"). With the White Album, the four musicians freed themselves from a crazy era in order to truly start making music again — together, but each already on a journey of his own.

The Beatles at their limits

The fact that the album actually saw the light of day is almost a miracle. In early 1968, the four Beatles boys were still spending their time in the Indian meditation camp of Guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, vowing to stay together forever. Then Ringo was the first to lose his appetite for transcendental meditation and vegetarian food. Paul followed him a bit later, while John and George spent several weeks in India writing songs.

Back in London, they released their most successful single, "Hey Jude," in August 1968, founding their record company Apple Records. The new record producers however didn't have strong managerial skills, and thus their label turned into a money pit. By then, John also had Yoko Ono constantly in tow, which really annoyed the three other band members — they couldn't stand her.

The recording sessions for what came to be known as the White Album were exhausting; the musicians had increasingly separate artistic views as they recorded their songs, composing some of them on the go in the studio. They all played several instruments, switching spots at the piano or the drums. Paul was the most versatile player: along with the bass, he played guitars, keyboards, drums and the timpani.

There were also a few guest musicians — strings and brass players, as well as singers, including Yoko Ono. Producer George Martin can be heard on the harmonium, and the then guitarist of Cream — Eric Clapton, a longtime friend of George — played the guitar solo on "While my Guitar Gently Weeps."

At some point, Ringo lost his nerves during the recording sessions and briefly left the studio. When he came back, his drums were decorated with flowers: "Welcome home." The Beatles finally completed the record with the help of their producer George Martin, who later described it as the "most difficult album of his career."

Twilight on the horizon

All that stress is barely noticeable on the album. What is striking, however, is that each Beatle seemed to be going his own way on the songs they created, accompanied by the three others.

Once the album was recorded, the Beatles took a break from each other and met again in January 1969, weeks after the record's release on November 22, 1968. While the ensuing period of harmony was only brief, the Fab Four nevertheless managed to create another monument, Abbey Road.

Let It Be, released in 1970, became their farewell album. On April 10, 1970, the Beatles officially separated.

Each album unique

What remains is the music. I've known the White Album for at least 40 years now. The songs on the album still manage to fascinate me every time I listen to it even now. My copy of the album is one of a kind: Like all copies, it has a serial number. My record, bought in 1976, shows six figures already.

The very first copies are traded at extremely high prices today. In 2005, number 0000008 cover was auctioned off for €13,200 euros ($15,000) — and it was literally only the cover. However, it was signed by the Beatles themselves. Another record at auction was broken in 2015, when Ringo Starr sold his copy, numbered 0000001, for the equivalent of about €700,000.

Celebrating the 50th anniversary

By now, different anniversary editions have been released — box sets with either three or seven CDs or two or four vinyls. The White Album has even made it back into the charts in several countries. George Martin's son, Giles, and sound engineer Sam Okell worked with a team of engineers and audio restorers at London's Abbey Road Studios for almost a year to complete the stereo and 5.1 surround sound mixes of the album.

Giles Martin's stereo album mix, which is taken directly from the original four-track and eight-track session tapes, was inspired by his father's original stereo mix. In last week of May in 1968, the Beatles gathered in George's house in Esher to record demos. Until now, the so-called "Esher Demos" had only circulated as bootlegs; they are included in the new editions, as well as further recordings of studio sessions that have never been heard before.

The deluxe edition also features a 168-page hardcover book with accompanying photos, documents and texts. All these bonuses make a new purchase very tempting — especially considering that my own copy sounds rather scratchy after 40 years of listening to it.

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Moscow in the dark Mon, 19 Nov 2018 15:12:00 +0000 The post Moscow in the dark appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

There is plenty to do and discover after sunset in Moscow. Be that visiting a circus, a beauty salon, or Moscow’s futuristic-looking Zaryadye Park. The metropolis has much to offer. 

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Arouset Al-Mawlid: retrieved heritage, resisting extinction Mon, 19 Nov 2018 13:30:06 +0000 Families defy western lifestyle through reviving Egyptian cultural legacy

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A scene of a mid-sixties woman, with greyish covering most of her hair, wrinkles taking of her smiling face, passionately checking all of the dolls wearing dresses in various styles and colours at street stands selling Arouset Al-Mawlid (The Al-Mawlid doll).

Having Al-Mawlid El-Nabawy (Prophet’s Birthday) knocking on the doors in Egypt means massive celebrations which you will find nowhere else in the world, and Arouset Al-Mawlid is in the heart of the celebration. The plastic doll is known to be an inseparable part for Muslims celebrating the birth of Prophet Mohammed.

The plastic doll and Halawet Al-Mawlid (Al-Mawled Sweetened nuts) are Egypt’s most famous common markers of the birth of the Islam Prophet. However, both of them found their way to Egyptians in the Fatimid era, long after Islam saw the light and started spreading. 

Purchasing the Mawlid’s doll and nuts has become like many of the eastern celebrations which are losing the battle against the western ones in the Egyptian society, either due to economic situation or social trends. With the price hike of both and the deterioration of the financial status, many turned their head off the bashing attitude.

However, many still fight to keep what they inherited from their ancestors alive. Even for those who live abroad, Egypt heritage is still revived every year.

Magda Khalil, a Facebook user, said she gets her children, nieces, and nephews Arouset Al-Mawled and Halawet Al-Mawlid every year. For her family, Al-Mawlid is a gala celebration that requires spreading happiness among everyone, even if they no longer live in Egypt. 

“In my family, we still get the Arouset Al-Mawlid for girls and Hossan Al-Mawlid (horse-shaped sweet) for boys, who are now the grandchildren of the family,” Khalil said, adding “My niece living in Holland always asks me to buy all the types of sweets she likes in Halawet Al-Mawlid and send it with someone or keep it till she comes with her family for a visit.”

Khalil’s grandchildren always expect to learn about the celebration’s rituals

“We [with the kids] also distribute a box of Halawet Al-Mawlid to the orphan house next to us and to some of the house porters in our street as well,” she added.

Staying outside Egypt is not enough reason for Khalil’s family to make them forget teaching their children that the prophet’s birth is an occasion requires celebration, and to be observed annually.

“We consider the birth of the prophet as a day to share happiness with orphans and poor people,” she explained.

Heba Abousteit, a mother of two, prefers to celebrate Al-Mawlid Al-Nabawy more of the way she was raised on. Instead of purchasing the plastic doll, she spent her time crafting the doll and the horse with her children while telling them the reason for the celebration.

“My kids are very young, we do not buy them plastic dolls or horses, instead we do drawings and crafts of both every year,” she said.

Following the same path is 43-year-old Nermine Norma. Despite having no kids, Norma has never observed Al-Mawlid celebration without creating her own doll and dresses in several bright colours.

”This is how I feel the Mawled spirit,” she explains.

Maha Al-Dhan came up with the idea of baking Arouset Al-Mawlid.

“For two years, I have been making an eatable Arouset Al-Mawlid. With cupcakes and cookies, my daughter and I bake together Arouset Al-Mawlid cake, which she enjoys doing,” she added.   

The story of how Arouset Al-Mawlid has found its way into the history books differs from one source to another. The most popular theory states that Fatimid ruler Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah went with one of his wives to celebrate Al-Mawlid Al-Nabawi among the public. His wife looked so beautiful wearing a white gown that a confectionary artist modelled a doll out of honey to emulate her look. As for Al-Hakim bi-Amr Allah, he was portrayed as a knight on his horse, which came to be known as “Housan Al-Mawlid” afterwards.

The couple was commemorated long after their death through the doll and the horse that became the traditional gifts of Al-Mawlid Al-Nabawi.

Both the doll and horse used to be made of honey until the 1990s. However, when the invasion of plastic dolls took over local markets, people started replacing sweets with actual dolls. Soon after, people started only purchasing Arouset Al-Mawlid so the horse also disappeared.

When it comes to Halawet Al-Mawlid, it is said that the Fatimid rulers used to influence and abate the masses by distributing sweets made of a mixture of nuts and honey. The sweets were mostly distributed during El-Mawlid El-Nabawi and soon, it became an inseparable part of the annual celebration.

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10 American bloggers explore Egypt’s beauty Sat, 17 Nov 2018 17:20:13 +0000 Visit to promote Egypt as favourable destination among tourists worldwide, position it as attractive, safe, unique travel, investment spot

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With the aim of promoting tourism and spreading a positive image of Egypt worldwide, the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt’s (AmCham) Travel and Tourism Committee, with the cooperation of the Ministry of Tourism, hosted 10 American bloggers in Egypt for a one-week trip to roam and explore its hidden gems.

The tour included visiting Egypt’s most charming cities of Luxor and El-Gouna, alongside Cairo, according to a press release published by the AmCham Egypt.

The tour aimed to reveal Egypt’s history, while connecting it with present day Egyptians’ modern lives. This took place through visiting Luxor’s Karnak temple, the Giza Plateau, and Al-Muzz street. For a modern enthrallment, the tour could not be completed without visiting EL-Gouna in Hurghada. 

The visit is planned for the delegation to “promote Egypt as a favourable destination among tourists from all over the world, and positioning it as an attractive, safe, and unique travel and investment spot,” according to the press release.

“Egypt is so much more than just the pyramids, it’s an absolute beautiful country and I could not recommend visiting it enough,” said one of the bloggers in a video published on the AmCham’s official Instagram page.

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Germany's longest-running soap to end in 2020: What made Lindenstrasse so popular Fri, 16 Nov 2018 14:28:00 +0000 The post Germany's longest-running soap to end in 2020: What made Lindenstrasse so popular appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

When it began in 1985, the soap opera “Lindenstrasse” got miserable reviews and many predicted a short life for the series. Fans now mourn the near end of a three-decade-old tradition. Here’s why Germans love it.It became a trending topic on Twitter in Germany within minutes that the news broke on Friday: The long-running TV series Lindenstrasse will be ending in 2020, 35 years after it started in 1985.

In the iconic program, seen as Germany's first soap opera, the characters aren't all that sexy, hardly any are rich, and they're usually never confronted with amnesia, alien abductions, evil twins or any of the other outlandish situations that have become part and parcel of many of the world's serial dramas.

Instead, up and down Lindenstrasse, the fictional street in a Munich suburb where the series of the same name is set, fairly ordinary people meet the triumphs and tragedies that many experience in real life: infidelity, failing marriages, first love, parental disapproval, new careers or youth violence. The characters are like the neighbors next door and the German public has been tuning in faithfully to find out where their on-screen lives are taking them for 20 years or 1,000 episodes.

For many Germans, Sunday evening from 6:50 to 7:20 p.m. is Lindenstrasse time, and woe to the person who calls or shows up unannounced at the door of a fan during that period.

Read more: How TV is refining its secret recipe

Borrowed from the Brits

The show's premise was borrowed from the BBC's Coronation Street, Britain's longest-running television soap opera, which is set in a gritty industrial suburb of Manchester.

The Lindenstrasse crowd has less coal dust to contend with, but like their British cousins, the characters on the outskirts of Munich are overwhelmingly midway or slightly lower on the socio-economic scale. Instead of super models, oil barons or jet-setting cosmetic company heads, the folks who live or work on Lindenstrasse are housewives, taxi drivers, travel agents or hair stylists.

The concerns of the Beimer, Kling, Zenker or Sarikaki families are generally the concerns of average people. They complain about high taxes, unemployment or like to share the latest gossip about the super's wife. Frau Beimer's husband has left her for a younger woman. A Greek family is thrown into turmoil when the oldest son wants to marry a German woman.

Read more: Tatort: 10 rules for Germany's longest-running TV show

Controversial issues

But Lindenstrasse has not been afraid to tackle more controversial issues and has been on the forefront regarding several topics other shows have been reluctant to touch. The daughter of one of the central families once suffered from bulimia; another son was born with Down's syndrome.

An HIV-positive woman passed on the virus to her son and a gay couple took care of the boy after his mother's death from the disease. Lesbian storylines have been running for years and, in 1990, the show featured the first gay kiss on German primetime TV.

The series sometimes integrated elements of the day's news. On the Sunday of the 2009 federal election, the first results were revealed within the program and characters commented on them.

In 2012, two characters initiated a flashmob against climate change, asking people to head to the Lindenstrasse of their towns and meet in front of apartment number 3 of that street. The real-life police feared the flashmobs would lead to chaotic parties, and the program had to clarify that it was only a fictional call to action.

The characters' responses to many controversial issues have led some to complain that the creator and producer of the show, Hans W. Geissendörfer, uses the show to present his own left-of-center political opinions. Critics say other views are represented as being odd or out of touch with the times. That, they say, is problematic since the show airs on German public broadcasting and, due to its station's charter, has a duty to remain politically neutral.

Millions watch every week

Lindenstrasse has long lost some of its audience to more "modern" series. While the show still attracted an average 4.8 million viewers on Sunday evenings in 2005, the number of viewers has rarely reached over 3 million in more recent years — still a respectable figure for such a long-running show.

Now German public broadcaster ARD has announced the program would be ending in 2020. The news came two months after a central character, Hans Beimer, died after 33 years in the show.

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Turkish Specialty: Hünkar Beğendi Fri, 16 Nov 2018 13:58:00 +0000 The post Turkish Specialty: Hünkar Beğendi appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

A recipe with a history: “Hünkar Beğendi” means ‘ the Sultan enjoyed it’. We went to Istanbul to learn how to make this Turkish specialty with eggplant and meat.Recipe for "Hünkar Begendi"
(Serves four)

500g lamb
5 tbsp butter
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 cup of tomato puree
6 medium-sized eggplants
1 glass milk or cream
1 cup flour
1 cup olive oil
A pinch of salt
A pinch of black pepper
1 fresh nutmeg
1-2 chilli pods
3 cups water
1 cup of grated Kaşar cheese (or Gouda or Parmesan)
1 green pepper
2 tomatoes

Heat the olive oil in a large pan and add the diced meat. Fry for a short while on a high heat. Then add the onions and garlic and fry everything briefly. After 4-5 minutes add the tomato puree; season with salt and pepper. Finally, add 3 cups of water and allow to simmer on a low heat for about 20 minutes. Add fresh chilli to taste, if desired.
Wash and dry the eggplant, make small cuts into the skin and then place on a baking tray and cook on the top shelf of the oven on a high heat, turning it repeatedly until it is softened on all sides. The eggplants can also be cooked on a grill. Cook until the skin of the eggplants turns black. The important thing is that they are cooked right through to the center. They are only ready once they are really soft all over so they could be easily mashed down with a spoon. Allow to cool and then remove the skin (even if it is not burned – otherwise the eggplant will taste bitter). Chop or mash the eggplant. Meanwhile melt the butter in another saucepan, then add the flour. Stir until the flour is completely mixed in. Add a glass of milk or cream and stir until smooth. Then add the eggplant and stir everything together well. Season with salt and allow to simmer for a few minutes, stirring all the time. Finally add the cheese. Season to taste with salt, pepper and nutmeg.
When serving, first arrange the eggplant puree in a bowl and then add the meat with a little sauce. Garnish with grilled tomatoes and a green pepper. Afiyet olsun! Enjoy!

Hünkar Begendi, Sultan, eggplant puree, recipe, Istanbul

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Original torch of the Statue of Liberty moves again Fri, 16 Nov 2018 13:26:00 +0000 The post Original torch of the Statue of Liberty moves again appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

The original torch had to leave its place in the base of the Statue of Liberty because it is to be exhibited in a new museum on Liberty Island. It is not expected to be on display until May 2019.Like the entire Statue of Liberty, the torch designed by the French sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi (1834-1904) was replaced by a copy in 1984. It had become too dilapidated. Since then, the original has been on display in a museum in the pedestal of the statue on Liberty Island in New York Harbour. Now the original torch has been moved to a new museum, which is currently under construction on the island and is scheduled to open next May, using a special transport vehicle.The new museum became necessary because the current exhibition in the pedestal of the statue became too small. Around 4.5 million people visit Liberty Island every year – between 8,000 and 28,000 a day. Only about 20 percent of them will be able to enter the statue, only about 7 percent into the crown. The free tickets are usually sold out months in advance.

Visitors don't need a ticket for the new museum, but they still do for the ferry to the island. The statue will remain open for visitors with free tickets.

The 46 metre high Statue of Liberty, consisting of an iron scaffold and a copper outer skin, was a gift from France and was inaugurated in 1886. In addition to that of sculptor Bartholdi, it also bears the signature of the French engineer Gustave Eiffel, who a few years later was to build the Eiffel Tower named after him.

is/fm (dpa)

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Mid-20s pregnant woman’s remains found in Kom Ombo Wed, 14 Nov 2018 17:49:07 +0000 Bone structures reveal that young lady had problem in pelvic area, most likely leading to her death

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The Ministry of Antiquities announced on Wednesday the discovery of the remains of a mid-20-year-old female who was pregnant in her third trimester, while excavating in a Kom Ombo archaeological site in Aswan.

Moustafa Waziri, secretary general of High Supreme of Antiquities stated in a press release that the burial was unearthed with almost no missing parts. The remains were found in a tomb which studies reveal was used by travellers who moved to Egypt from the country’s southern boarders at the era between 1550-1750 BC.

Studies reveal that the woman was around 25, and she was pregnant in her last months, as the remains of the baby were also found placed in labour position inside of her.

The bone structures also reveal that the young lady had a problem in the pelvic area. Scientists believe she probably had a broken bone which was improperly treated, causing complications most likely leading to her death.

Waziri explained that the burials of the women were found wrapped in leather. Two pottery pots were found buried next to her, one of them is believed to have been used a lot before it was buried, while the other was painted in red and black, which is what the traditional pot residents of this area are known for making.

Several giving’s were found near her remains, which leads to the belief that the woman was a handicraft-maker and her family wanted to honour her memory by burying a lot of unused objects with her.

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‘A tale’: photojournalist Mohamed Omar’s first solo exhibition Wed, 14 Nov 2018 13:56:20 +0000 Photographer received several international awards for his photo projects

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For almost 20 years, photography has not only been the passion, a life motivating aspect, and the only source of income for prominent photojournalist Mohammed Omar, but it has been also been a gateway for him to carve his name in the history hall of photographers who document the details of Egyptians’ lives and ongoing struggles. In his first solo exhibition, Omar showcases the documented photographs he took throughout his journey.

‘A tale’ is the name of Omar’s first solo exhibition, kicking off on Thursday at the Greek Campus. Through his captured portraits, Omar sheds light on some of his first-seen photos, which he took over the years in different places around Egypt during his journey as he documented photo-essays.

In his photographs, Omar follows the school of focusing on human features to give voice to the picture.

“I decided to entitle my first exhibition ‘A tale’, as every photo tells a story,” Omar told Daily News Egypt, adding, “it has stories of my life journey, others told through light in a certain photo, or even by stories of muted voices people cannot hear in a photo, yet can see in their impressions.”

From his point of view, this exhibition documents his constant attempts—ever since he started as a professional photographer—to be different and unique from any other photographer.

Omar started his journey in 1999 as a celebrity photographer in “Zahret Al-Khaleej”, a well-known magazine in the Gulf region. Within a few months, he managed to establish his own agency where he photographed celebrities for magazine covers.

After a photoshoot with the late artist Warda Al-Jazairia, she personally asked him to be her only personal photographer. For several years, Omar was the only person to photograph the beautiful artist, roaming the world with her during her concerts. 

“She always told me I was the son she never had. She used to tell people that I am the only photographer who reflects her soul in the pictures” Omar recalled.

After the singer passed away, Omar worked as the Cairo Opera House’s official ballet photographer.

However, his urge to document the life of Egyptians led him to start in the field of photojournalism.

He worked for several international organisations. In local publications, Omar worked for the Daily News Egypt and Al-Watan newspapers.  Omar received several international awards for his photo projects.

Among his photo-essay projects, was documenting the oldest dye-house in Cairo, date harvesting, stone workers in Minya, Egypt’s oldest coffee place, and using bee stings as alternative medicine. 

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Google celebrated Hend Rostom’s 87’s birthday Tue, 13 Nov 2018 17:35:08 +0000 Throughout her journey, Rostom took part in 80 films, where she was known to be a beauty icon, with enchanting looks

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Google Egypt celebrated on Monday the 87th birthday of the Marilyn Monroe of the Orient, Hind Rostom, in a doodle which portrayed the Egyptian diva in three of her most famous looks in golden era films.

The doodle featured Rostom with her most famous hair style, and commonly worn-style dress, while in the background, a drawing with her most famous roles. One of them, “Narges” the cold drinks vendor in Youssef Chahine’s drama “Bab El-Hadid” (The Iron Gate), co-starring Farid Shawqi and Youccef Chahine. 

The beautiful seductive icon was born in Alexandria under the name of Nariman Murad. Her first appearance on the silver screen was at the age of 16, in the film Azhaar wa Ashwak (Flowers and Thorns). However, she started gaining wide fame due to her a role in “Banat el Lail” (Women of the Night).

Throughout her journey, Rostom took part in 80 films, where she was known to be a beauty icon, with enchanting looks.

She decided to step down from the limelight and retire in 1979, as she wanted her audience to keep remembering her as the shining, seductive superstar. Ever since, she turned down every invitation for a media appearance or an honorary ceremony.

The beauty icon died in 2011 following a heart attack.

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Symphony of Colour, Compassion: Wissam Fahmy’s latest art scene enriched portraits Tue, 13 Nov 2018 17:35:05 +0000 One of most influential female contemporary artists in Egypt in 20th century who carved their names in history of Egyptian art

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For five decades, veteran Egyptian artist Wissam Fahmy has been an ongoing source of enrichment to the artistic scene in Egypt with heart-touching gems that documented her journey in crossing the world since the 1960s. At the age of 79, the active artist still brings a new perspective of beauty to light through the paintings of her latest exhibitions, “Symphony of Colour & Compassion”.

With the attendance of Minister of Planning, Monitoring and Administrative Reform, Hala Al-Saeed, the exhibition opened its doors to the public at the Salah Taher Ballroom in the Cairo Opera House.

Following the same path of Fahmy’s previous exhibitions, the profit of sold portraits are to be donated to Magdy Yaqoub’s Foundation, Aswan Heart’s Centre and Dr. Mohamed Ghoneim’s Urology, Nephrology International Mansoura Centre International Centre for Kidney Diseases and Research in Mansoura.

At the opening ceremony, Fahmy’s daughter, Rand Fouad, who is also an artist, asserted that the exhibition is a chronicle to the veteran artist’s long history.

“This is a tribute exhibition to a brilliant artist, yet it is also an event that paves the way to achieving sustainable development in Egypt,” she said, explaining, “the demonstration of this exhibition is the largest combined effort of private and public institutions as well as charitable organisations, in the arts.”

For a week, the exhibition will bring the world new abstract art portraits, with bright contrasting colours, spreading the vibes of warmth, sheer, and positivity.


Fahmy is a pioneer of modern Egyptian art, with paintings that explore various styles inspired by her travels across Egypt and around the world, from the 1960’s to date. The opening of the exhibition witnessed Fahmy’s signing of her book in which she documents her artistic journey, where she documented what she has seen in the world for decades.

She is considered one of the most influential female contemporary artists in Egypt in the 20th century who carved their names in the history of Egyptian art.

At the age of 17, Fahmy dropped out of high school to marry her sweet heart, life-time partner, architect Ezz Eldin Fouad. However, five years later, after giving birth to her second baby, she decided to peruse her passion and study arts at the Leonardo da Vinci Art Institute in Cairo, which later became the Faculty of Fine Arts.

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How German women obtained the right to vote 100 years ago Mon, 12 Nov 2018 11:24:00 +0000 The post How German women obtained the right to vote 100 years ago appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Women won the right to vote in Germany on November 12, 1918. A look back at the activists who contributed to this achievement and why there’s still much to be done in the country to really claim equal rights.Men are too emotional to vote, feminist US author Alice Duer Miller wrote back in 1915.

"Their conduct at baseball games and political conventions shows this, while their innate tendency to appeal to force renders them particularly unfit for the task of government," the US activist argued in her book Are Women People?

She listed four more arguments why men should be barred from voting, in an ironic response to arguments just as absurd that were used to forbid women from voting at the time. Her essay was part of a increasingly louder movement protesting discrimination against women.

Long battle for equality

In 1791, French playwright and women's rights activist Olympe de Gouges wrote the "Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen" — and her demands and ideas led to her arrest and beheading at the guillotine two years later.

Some visionaries demanded equality for women very early on, and Olympe de Gouges was one of them, says legal historian Anna Katharina Mangold, adding however that the women's movement only developed as a political movement in the mid-19th century.

It wasn't even about the vote at the beginning, Mangold says, but about basic legal rights. "Women were not persons on a legal level, they were not regarded as legally competent to sign contracts; they had to be represented by a man, be it father, husband or a close male relative."

Women in Germany were fed up with that situation. Before World War I, the mood in the women's movement was optimistic, thanks to early achievements.

The movement was more or less on hold during the war, only to become stronger than ever by the end of the conflict.

Women stood side by side with men in many wartime situations. They also took on men's jobs in factories, "so it had become much more difficult to explain why they still couldn't vote," the historian says. Just before the war ended, women's suffrage supporters thought they had finally reached their goal.

Suffrage in Germany

In his 1917 Easter speech, German Emperor Wilhelm II announced plans for democratic reforms, including the vote. But he didn't mention women's suffrage at all, which angered the activists.

The women movement's different wings — including bourgeois middle-class and leftist activists — joined forces and moved into the spotlight with petitions, assemblies and other joint actions.

By November 12, 1918, the legal basis for women's right to vote was in place. The Council of People's Deputies — the government at the time — announced that all elections for public office would be conducted according to the same secret, direct and general right to vote for men and women at least 20 years of age. Women were therefore allowed to participate in the first elections of the Weimar Republic in January 1919.

The Germans weren't trailblazers, however, as the right to vote for women had been introduced in several Scandinavian countries a few years earlier. Other countries introduced women's suffrage much later.

"Switzerland, a deeply democratic country that is always called a model of direct democracy in Europe, only introduced women's right to vote on a federal level in 1971, and one Swiss canton, Appenzell Innerrhoden, only established female suffrage in 1991," Anna Katharina Mangold points out.

A work in progress

While Germany's law of 1918 was a milestone in the struggle of women for equality, the wording of Article 109, paragraph 2 of the Weimar Constitution still left room for interpretation. Since it stated that men and women basically have the same civic rights and duties, "on a legal level, you can always argue that 'basically' refers to potential exceptions, and many exceptions would be applied," says the historian. Female suffrage was for instance restricted under the Nazis.

It was only in 1949 that the law was changed through the new German constitution, known as the Basic Law, with Article 3 stating that men and women have equal rights.

In the early 1990s, a second sentence was added to that article, declaring, "The state shall promote the actual implementation of equal rights for women and men and take steps to eliminate disadvantages that now exist."

"This second sentence clearly shows that it is not enough to grant formally equal rights; they actually have to be implemented, as the Basic Law states. That is the phase in which we currently are," says Mangold.

As demonstrated by victims of sexual harassment speaking out through the #MeToo movement, or through Germany's current law banning abortion "advertising," it is clear that women still do not have the same status as men.

"You only need to take a look at how rape trials are conducted," says Mangold. "Law is a conservative science that is still predominantly occupied and practiced by men who fear losing something. That's why absolutely basic rights that are to be protected by the state, such as physical integrity, are being called into question."

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Michael Jackson’s black jacket sold for $298,000 Sun, 11 Nov 2018 18:32:55 +0000 Jacket was sold around three times more its asked price

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Legendary megastar Michael Jackson’s black jacket, which he wore in his first solo tour in late 80’s, was sold for $298,000 at an auction in New York, according to Reuters.

The jacket was sold around three times more its asked price, which was expected to be $100,000. The black jacket was the one Jackson constantly wore at his international tour which was 1987-1989. The jacket was sold in a two-day auction held by the owner Milton Verret, and American businessperson and philanthropist who owns the jacket as a part of almost a hundred-piece collection of rock music.

The auction also sold belongings of other megastars like Madonna, and guitars played by iconic stars like Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, and U2 band members The Edge and Bono.

Jackson lost his life in 2009 at the age of 50 due to an overdose of an anaesthetic he was using as a sleep aid.

The jacket is one of the Jackson’s most famous Jacksons, with the black and red leather jacket which was previously sold for $1.8 million at an auction in 2011.

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Seven tombs unearthed in Saqqara, bringing world’s first mummified scarabs to light Sat, 10 Nov 2018 21:28:07 +0000 Discovery was sponsored by Orascom Investment, were thousands of relics belonging to animals and Egyptian gods were found

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The Ministry of Antiquities announced on Saturday the discovery of eight 8 tombs, four of which belong to the Old Kingdom, while the three were reused in the New Kingdom, and the remaining one is still sealed without knowing the exact era it belongs to. The tombs were discovered by Egyptian archaeological mission, on the western side of Giza’s Saqqara necropolis.

The discovery was announced at the Saqaara necropolis near the seven tombs, with the attendance of 30 foreign ambassadors and cultural attaches of many embassies, and is also sponsored by Orascom Investment. Thousands of relics belonging to animals and Egyptian gods were also found inside the tombs.

Some of the tombs were used to bury the mummified cats, while one of them had the name of khufu-Imhat among its carved words at the beginning of it. The tomb belonged to a high servant of the Royal family of the late Fifth Dynasty and the beginning of Sixth Dynasty.  Khufu-Imhat was the General Supervisor of the Royal buildings at that era.

The Minister of Antiquities, khaled Anany, said in a press conference that the tombs were full of mummified animals. Two hundred mummified cats were unearthed out of the seven tombs. Anany added that area is full of surprises and a lot discoveries that are yet to see the light.

“The discoveries of this area are far from over, and I believe Saqqara is going to surprise us with more for centuries if not decades,” he added.

The discoveries were found near the cliff of an area called the Bastet, Anany declared. 

For his side, Moustafa Waziri, secretary-general of the Higher Supreme Council of Antiquities said that the importance of this discovery lies in the scarab mummies found inside the tombs.

“We found two large boxes in one of the burials, one has three layers, with total of around 200 mummified scarabs, which is the first to be found in the whole world, while the other has mummified large male and female scarabs” he said.

He added that once they found the scarabs, they contacted several museums from all over the world which all assured that them that no mummified scarabs were ever discovered, “they all agreed that they had found empty mummification boxes, yet with no body inside,” he explained.

For entomologists, this is a treasure that would attract scientists from all over the world, he added.

Waziri stressed that this is the biggest find in the area so far. He also expressed his pride of finding this discovery by Egyptian hands. “We have over 250 foreign archaeological missions in Egypt, yet for such a discovery to see the light by the hand of one of the 25 Egyptian archaeological missions, that is something that calls for pride,” he asserted.

In the tombs of the ‘holy animals’ land, as Waziri describes it, the mission discovered hundreds of  animal sarcophagus for cobras, cats, and crocodiles. The mission also found funerary equipment buried inside the tombs.

“Some of the found relics are statues for animals while others are mummies wrapped in their linen fabric,” Waziri explained. 

Two days before announcing the discovery, while workers were preparing for the press conference, the mission came across another sealed cemetery whose era is yet unidentified.  Waziri further stated that two huge discoveries were found in Upper Egypt, yet they are being prepared to be announced to the world soon.

The artefacts will be displayed at Imhotep Museum of Saqqara starting from 15 November for a month for free, before they are distributed across the museums depending on the need of each, with putting in plan the museums of Sharm El-Sheikh and Hurghada.

All photos taken by Asmaa Gamal

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Scientists reveal Hatshepsut died of cancer at 50 Tue, 06 Nov 2018 19:29:21 +0000 Hatshepsut buried at Valley of Kings in Luxor, interred in KV20 tomb along with her father, believed to be valley’s first tomb

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Thousands of years after her death, scientists revealed that ancient Egyptian female pharaoh Hatshepsut died of cancer at the age of 50, according to Hussein Abdel Basser, director of Antiquities Museum of Bibliotheca Alexandria.

The statement came during a lecture held on Monday at the Bibliotheca, entitled ‘Pharaohs’ Queens: The Drama of Love and Power.’

Abdel Baser said in the lecture that the second female pharaoh also suffered from diabetes.

The female queen was the fifth pharaoh of the 18th Dynasty, and the second female ruler in the history.

She was described as “the first great woman in history of whom we are informed,” according to Egyptologist James Breasted.

Scientists also discovered that Hatshepsut had bone cancer, which has spread throughout her body shortly before her death.

She was the wife of Thutmose II, and the mother of the following ruler Thutmose III, whom she ruled alongside, as he was only 2-years-old when his father died.

Hatshepsut was buried at the Valley of the Kings in Luxor, interred in the KV20 tomb along with her father, which is believed to be the first tomb in the valley.


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Deutsche Grammophon: 120 years old but not treading softly Tue, 06 Nov 2018 14:13:00 +0000 The post Deutsche Grammophon: 120 years old but not treading softly appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

The world’s oldest recording label is celebrating its 120th anniversary on November 6 with a concert in the Berlin Philharmonie. A glance back at how the “yellow label” wrote music history.Founded in December 1898 in Hanover, the recording company known worldwide by its German name, Deutsche Grammophon (DG), is as old as the recording industry itself. The founders were the American Emil Berliner — born in Hanover and the inventor of the shellac disk and the gramophone — and his brother Josef. Berliner's disk was a further development of the cylinder that had been patented by Thomas Edison.

The music world was quick to pick up on the new technology: As early as 1902, the great Italian tenor Enrico Caruso was singing into a horn to have his voice captured for posterity. Many more followed. By 1907, the record factory in Hanover had 200 record pressing machines.

Many names, one tradition

In the decades to follow, many names were associated with Deutsche Grammophon: the Gramophone Company, Polydor, Siemens & Halske, Telefunken, Archiv Produktionen, Polygram. The company was affiliated with some, founded others and was taken over by yet others. Today Deutsche Grammophon belongs to the Universal Music Group, but the label's original name remains, as does its sometimes decades-long relationships with artists.

In 1913 came the first complete recording of an orchestral work: Ludwig van Beethoven's Fifth Symphony was released on four disks, both sides recorded, with Arthur Nikisch conducting the Berlin Philharmonic.

Two world wars led to bitter setbacks in the company's history. During World War I, DG was separated from its affiliate, the Gramophone Company in England, and the allies banned its recordings from export.

Before World War II, Nazi policies resulted not only in the banning of Jewish artists but also the destruction of countless of their recordings: an irretrievable loss for music history.

Read more: A 20th century giant: 100 years of Leonard Bernstein

Times change, people adapt

The iconic yellow label came only in the postwar era. DG had to reinvent itself, and it did, by gathering some of the greatest names in the business, such as the conductors Herbert von Karajan, Karl Böhm and Wilhelm Furtwängler and the singer Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, to name but a few. The returns from the big names enabled the company to pursue other activities, such as on the sub-label "Archiv Produktion," whose recordings of baroque music were appreciated worldwide.

The development of the Compact Disc in the early 1980s led to an upswing in the recording industry's fortunes. After having reached saturation, the market was eager for the new technology, and many older releases were digitally remastered.

The company has responded to wide-reaching transformation in the digital age, placing its recordings on streaming services including Apple Music and Amazon.

Yet in Germany, DG still releases 80 percent of its classical music output on recording media such as the CD and repopularized vinyl. Only 20 percent is distributed by purely digital means. Consumer preferences in the US are different, with 55 percent of classical music releases now distributed on digital platforms.

Enduring values still in trend

Deutsche Grammophon's president Clemens Trautmann sees "in the confusing variety of available music experiences in the digital age, a need for enduring values and orientation, which is leading to a renaissance of classical music."

That does not exclude new genres or performance venues, such as neo-classical music or the "classical lounge," where serious artists perform in relaxed club settings, their performances streamed live.

In general, says Trautmann, the trend today is towards individualistic and unique musical renditions — and the boundaries between the media are becoming fluid. Musicians now disseminate their artistry via multiple media channels, including the social media. Thus there's a good chance that the "yellow label" will be around for some time to come.

The 120th anniversary of Deutsche Grammophon will be celebrated at the Berlin Philharmonie on November 6 with a special concert. The performance conducted by Manfred Honeck and featuring pianist Lang Lang and violinist Concert: 120 Years of Deutsche Grammophon will be streamed live online.

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Montpellier: Culture by the Coast Tue, 06 Nov 2018 08:23:00 +0000 The post Montpellier: Culture by the Coast appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

History, art and fine dining by the sea – no wonder visitors fall in love with Montpellier. The city in southern France is popular with its resident student population, and visitors from across the globe alike.

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Grand Egyptian Museum receives another collection of Tutankhamen’s belongings Mon, 05 Nov 2018 19:29:16 +0000 Antiquities belong to several ancient Egyptian eras varying from Egypt’s Old Kingdom until Late period

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The Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) received on Monday a new shipment of 614 relics including King Tutankhamen’s belongings from the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir, the Ministry of Antiquities announced in a press release.

The shipment held 11 relics of the young king’s personal possessions, to become part of the museum’s displays, which are planning to showcase Tutankhamen’s complete collection.

The museum’s soft opening is planned to take place early 2020.

The antiquities belong to several ancient Egyptian eras varying from Egypt’s Old Kingdom until the Late period.

Osama Abou El-Khier, the executive manager of the GEM Restoration Department said in a press release that the rare Tutankhamen’s garlands were transferred to be displayed in the museum.

He added that that all of the relics are to undergo restoration, each depending on its state.

Among the transferred relics are a statue of one of the Fifth Dynasty royal palace’s important men, and a portrait belonging to the 26th Dynasty which features the sphinx.

Throughout the past two years, almost most of Tutankhamen’s relics were transferred to the GEM, and the remains are planned to be transferred by the end of this year.

Earlier in May, the Ministry of Antiquities, with the help of armed forces, transferred the sixth and last of Tutankhamen’s chariots from the Military Museum at the Citadel to its final display location at the GEM.

The ministry announced then that it successfully transferred 4,800 relics from all over Egypt, preparing to showcase them all together at the GEM.

The young pharaoh started his reign at the age of nine and died 10 years later at the age of 19.

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Australia relaxes working holiday visa restrictions Mon, 05 Nov 2018 13:12:00 +0000 The post Australia relaxes working holiday visa restrictions appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Australia’s government plans to relax restrictions for backpackers and other visitors on working holidays visas, which will allow them to stay a year longer and also work in more regions around the country. The plan is aimed at largely helping the rural Aussie farmers who are struggling to fill critical job shortages. It will also boost local economies, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday. "Backpackers can come and have a great time, but every dollar they earn helps those regions," Morrison told reporters at a strawberry farm in south-east Queensland. "All the money goes back into regional towns creating more and more jobs… I want to see more than a billion dollars being spent by backpackers in regional areas."

According to government figures, some 419,000 backpackers visited Australia last year and spent 1.4 million nights in regional areas where they spent 920 million dollars (661 million US dollars). In Australia, the government gives working holiday visas (also called 417 or 462 visas), to people of specific age and from specific countries to stay, travel and work in Australia for a specific time. According to the Home Affairs Department, Australia granted 210,456 such working holiday visas in 2017-18 (ending in June 30 this year). Germany was among the top two recipient countries, with some 23,867 receiving the visa. The previous year, 25,704 received the visa.

According to the new plan backpackers will no longer have to leave jobs every six months and will be able to triple the length of their stay if they do extra agricultural work. The age limit for working holiday visas for some countries has also been lifted from 30 to 35.Last week a survey published by the University of New South Wales found that most international students and backpackers working in Australia earned only a fraction of the minimum wage. "Our study confirms that Australia has a large, silent underclass of underpaid migrant workers," said UNSW lecturer Bassina Farbenblum. "The scale of unclaimed wages is likely well over a billion dollars."

is/ks (dpa, afp)

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New Cairo’s Platinum Club hosts IFCC for equestrians to boost cultural integration Mon, 05 Nov 2018 13:00:33 +0000 Event’s concept is friendly show jumping tour, includes 1.30 Class competitions with $5,000 prize money, held in participating countries’ clubs

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Under slogan “Equestrian Competition for Cultural Integration,” New Cairo’s Platinum Club hosted the International Friendly Club Competition (IFCC) for equestrians from 1 to 3 November for the first time in Egypt.

The event’s concept is a friendly show jumping tour which includes 1.30 Class competitions with $5,000 prize money which are held in the participating countries’ clubs. Last June the competition was in the Derby Club, Saint Petersburg.

The IFCC participant countries are Russia, Bulgaria, South Africa, Jordan, India and Egypt. The schedule included riding, sightseeing, entertainment, and other activities.

Show jumping is an equestrian sport which involves navigating a course of jumps set up inside a ring, a stadium designed for equestrian events. In a show jumping event, the stamina, speed, and flexibility of the horse are tested, along with the relationship that the horse has with its rider. Competition rankings are determined by the number of faults accumulated, and the overall speed with which the course is completed.

Depending on the style of show jumping, the course may be made simple or complex. The highest level of show jumping, called Grand Prix, features complex and intimidating obstacles which include a wide spread, meaning that the horse has to jump high and long, and obstacles like hedges and ditches. It was the first time for Egypt to host 1.30 Class Competitions.

Chairperson of the Egyptian Equestrian Federation, Hesham Hatab, Saudi businessperson, Khaled Bin Laden, and chairperson of Al Ahly for Real Estate Development, Hussein Sabbour. attended the event and received honorary awards.

Daily News Egypt had the chance to interview several figures attending the event, the transcript for which is below lightly edited for clarity:

General manager of Platinum Club 

Hassan Souka, general manager of Platinum Club, said that the club, built on 28 feddan, has about 12 activities, including equestrian, swimming, squash and others. The club has about 200 equestrians from different ages. Souka explained that the Platinum Club’s Equicare Riding Centre, headed by Khaled Assem, agreed with a number of clubs from five countries to launch the IFCC over several rounds. Each country will host a round of the competition annually. The first round was held in Jordan, the second in Russia, and the third in Egypt, while the coming round will be in India. It was the first time for Egypt to host the competition and Platinum was the first Egyptian club to participate in an international club championship for equestrian, Souka added.

Moreover, Souka said that Platinum hosted the 2017 World Modern Pentathlon Championships which included about 350 players. The club will also host the first stage of 2019 Modern Pentathlon World Cup which will include about 450-550 players.

He said that the club won 38 medals in the Cairo and Giza national competitions for Judo. Also, three of the club female Judo players were nominated to join Egypt national under-16 team, including Laila Hesham, Laila Gharabawy, and Sohila Hassan.

Head of Equicare Riding Centre

Khaled Assem is a former equestrian and has a company specialised in supplying equestrian products and planning international competitions. Assem believes that equestrian became an industry, not just sport, as it requires funding and involves other activities.

He said that Egyptian equestrian is of a big developments and started to attract more attention.

However, “it needs certain types of people who are patient and can deal with animals. It is an expensive sport, but it builds a very special generation of players,” Assem said.

He stressed that development of the equestrian industry needs continuity, funding, and developing good ideas. He pointed out that the Egyptian Equestrian Federation (EEF) “does its best” to support Egyptian riders and clubs, but after all it is a governmental institution which governs the sport. “Only the private sector can really push forward equestrian in Egypt through offering funds and sponsoring competitions.

South African team

Southern Riding Club represented South Africa in the IFCC. Southern, founded in 1993, is owned and run by Eric Bianchi. He is the chairperson of the South African Equestrian Association (SAEA), an International Federation for Equestrian Sports (FEI) coach, and an International course designer.

Bianchi praised the well-organised competition, saying that it was an outstanding event and that the horses given to their riders were of good quality. It was the second time for Bianchi to visit Egypt as he visited Sharm el-Sheikh several years ago. He pointed out that equestrian is still developing in Egypt. He believes that Egypt has high standard equestrians and the Egyptian riders who participated in the IFCC were talented and can compete internationally.

In South Africa, equestrian competitions focus fundamentally on entry levels, including 1 metre and 1.10 metres classes. The IFCC is more about the unification of youth around the world, and giving them an opportunity to practice sports.

He said that the IFCC was launched in 2014 in South African, and toured the participating countries reaching Egypt, and it will go to India next.

Former Egyptian equestrian

Aya Amr, an Egyptian former equestrian in E class, attended the IFCC tour’s leg in Cairo. Supported by her mother, Amr, 24, inherited her passion for horses further and joined the Equestrian Club of Gezira (ECG) where she became a professional rider.

Amr’s equestrian journey lasted for 10 years before she retired last year. She competed in several national championships and ranked third in season 2015/16.

Amr believes that Platinum Club’s hosting of the IFCC reflects a great progress of the game in Egypt which can contribute to improving Egyptian equestrians on an international scale.

Miss Egypt Heba Hesham

Miss Egypt Heba Hesham attended the IFCC to present the trophies to the winners. Hesham—who now works as a fashion designer—said that she always liked the concept of being a knight, noting that it is about manners, courage and proper representation, which is the same point of beauty queens. “It is not only about the outer beauty but also the inner beauty.”

Hesham asserted that she was honoured to come and watch this type of elegant sport. She believes that equestrian needs more attention, especially that Egypt and Arab countries are known for Arabian horses which are among the best horse breeds in the world.

She pointed out that public figures and celebrities’ presence in such sports events is very important as they add some value to the competition, and attract the public’s interest, especially in Egypt, to follow it.

Hesham participated in a previous UN-related campaign to raise awareness about the problems facing animals worldwide. She called for more help from the government to educate people about the accurate ways to treat animals. She noted that almost all campaigns and efforts created to protect animals are charitable and on an individual basis, so they are limited and require governmental intervention.

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Vandalism and neglect haunt Libya's UNESCO World Heritage sites Mon, 05 Nov 2018 10:41:00 +0000 The post Vandalism and neglect haunt Libya's UNESCO World Heritage sites appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

Graffiti covers the ruins of Cyrene in eastern Libya, a city founded by Greeks more than 2,600 years ago that once attracted tourists but is now neglected and the target of vandals.Insecurity and looting has hit Libya's archaeological sites in the chaos and fighting that has followed the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, as rival groups struggle to consolidate control of the country.

Libya is home to five of UNESCO's World Heritage sites, listed for their outstanding universal value. The sites include the ruins of the Roman city of Leptis Magna and Sabratha, which is famous for its amphitheatre. There are also prehistoric rock carvings in the Akakous mountains deep in the southern Sahara desert near the border with Algeria.

In the east, tourists once trekked to Cyrene, a site founded by Greeks and later expanded by Romans, nestled in the mountains some 200 km (124 miles) east of Benghazi. But with foreign tourists gone and the sites visited only by Libyan families on weekend trips, locals have seized land at the sites and vandals have even smeared graffiti on columns and walls.

That presents a challenge to local authorities trying to protect the ruins located in the small community of Shahat. "In Cyrene, instead of speaking to one owner, now we speak to 50 with different backgrounds," said Ahmad Hussein, the head of the antiquities department of a parallel administration in charge of eastern Libya. "Some of the owners have built houses on these sites," he said.

The challenge is worsened by a law in 2013 that allowed people to reclaim land confiscated under Gaddafi. Some people took that literally and annexed what they felt they deserved. Hussein wants to hold those who seized land accountable. The effort to preserve ruins is further hampered by the fact that Libya has two governments. One administration backed by the United Nations sits in Tripoli, while the east has a parallel government. In a rare positive sign, Hussein said that about 1,700 artifacts had been returned since 2011 after they were looted inside the country. Many other items are smuggled abroad though.

Leptis Magna in northwestern Libya has been able to escape vandalism thanks to local history fans and relative security at its location near the city of Misrata. Sabratha has been repeatedly hit by fighting between rival factions and UNESCO last year issued an appeal to protect the site. The site received no help.

In the capital Tripoli, a lone director is trying to preserve some 18 Roman graves, dating back some 1,700 years which were found in 1958 in the western suburb of Janzour. "There is no support for this site," said al-Amari Ramadan Mabrouk, director of the Janzour antiquities office. Libyan families come occasionally but otherwise spiders and dust cover the graves. "I cannot give a number for tourists who visit Libya … but I can say that, before 2011, tourism was popular in Libya," he said.

Ayman al-Warfalli (rtr)

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Celebrating his 107 birthday: Naguib Mahfouz’s new stories see light Sun, 04 Nov 2018 12:00:25 +0000 Short stories will be published in book under title of ‘Hams El-Nogoom’

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Eighteen short stories of late Nobel Prize winner novelist Naguib Mahfouz are to be published on his birthday on 11 December. Mahfouz’s daughter, Um Kolthoum, announced that the stories are to be published by the Lebanese publishing house Dar Al-Saqi.

The stories were originally discovered by culture journalist Mohamed Shoair, while he was searching through Mahfouz’s writings, and articles in which Shoair chronicles Mahfouz’s most controversial novels “Awlad Haretna” (Children of Gebelawi).

The short stories will be published in a book under the title of “Hams El-Nogoom” (Whispering of the Stars).

Shoair found the stories written by Mahfouz’s hand, titled with “for publishing in 1994”. Some of them were published by state-owned magazine, Nisfeldunia, whilst others never saw the light before. None of the stories were ever published in any book.

The publishing house announced that the stories’ copy rights are all to be dedicated to Mahfouz through his daughter’s approval.

As for Um Kilthoum, she told state owned media outlet AL-Ahram, that the offer received by the Lebansese publishing house is considered “the best and the most appropriate” from all of what she had received.

Rania El-Mo’alem, manager of Dar Al-Saqi told media outlets that Um-Kolthoum was the one who decided the name of the published book, which is originally a name of one of the written stories named by Naguib Mahfouz.

The Children of Gebelawi was published in 1959. The novel portrays the patriarch Gebelawi who retreats to a mansion he has built in an oasis in the middle of a barren desert, banishing his children. The book is an allegory for the series of prophets that Islam believes includes Jesus and Moses, and culminates in the Prophet Mohammed.

First serialised in Egyptian newspapers in 1959, it was banned in Egypt. In 1994, an attacker inspired by a militant clerics ruling that the novel was blasphemous, stabbed Mahfouz.

Throughout his 70-year career, Mahfouz  published over 150 short stories, 34 novel.

Born on December 11, 1911 in Cairo, the son of a merchant, Mahfouz was the youngest son in a family of four sisters and two brothers. He obtained his philosophy degree from Cairo University at the age of 23, at a time when many Egyptians had only a primary education. He worked in the government at a cultural section until his retirement in 1971.


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“In”significance: art exhibition detects life of tossed objects Sat, 03 Nov 2018 20:08:12 +0000 When I walk down the streets and come across remains piled up on the sidewalk, I cant help but think of the stories behind those scraps: says artist

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Throughout her life, a simple walk down the street is considered a mind-blogging journey in the life of young artist Eman Hussein. Noticing the substances thrown on the street the sidewalks, has always been the one thing she could not take her mind off. Thinking of their life journey, people who once owned them and their future, were her mixed thoughts which overtook her mind, leading her to express these thoughts in the paintings of her first solo exhibition, “In”significance.

“In”significance is an abstract art exhibition, taking place at Zamalek’s Ubuntu Art Gallery. For two weeks, Hussein showcased portraits which allowed visitors to deeply roam the journey of the left-behind street objects, which she calls treasures, away from the state of time and dimension. 

In Hussein’s eyes, the waste materials are actually ‘fractured treasures,’ which are left behind broken, bent, or different from their original shape and purpose.

“Used objects move me. I find so much unseen value in them, they have our finger prints and traces, and they keep changing through time in different forms and shapes. This is what interests me the most,” Hussein told Daily News Egypt.

“When I walk down the street to find an old shoe, a piece of wood, a timeworn, falling apart closet, I could not help but thinking of the tales these fragments have had, and the human stories they witnessed,” she added.

“Insignificant as they may seem, but in their transient state, those scraps hold glimpses that belonged to the lives of those who tossed them behind,” as Hussein describes the objects which inspired her during the opening of the exhibition.

In her exhibition, Hussein focused on objects in their transition forms, tracing the changing states after humans are done using them.

“When we throw a certain substance away, our connections ends with it. However, its life circle doesn’t. In my drawings, I aim to present their transition forms until they totally vanish into nothing, just like human beings,” she explained.    

From her point of view, these thrown away objects are what represent the true meaning of human beings, change statuses, and eventually life. 

In her paintings, Hussein features the timeworn objects mostly in geometric shapes. As an architect, her drawings have the unique element of layering colours, shapes and structures one over another.    

“Subjects which are in transit position, usually lose their identity. I believe that geometric shapes are what present that the most,” she explained.

When it comes to shades, vibrant colours dominate the portraits. Layered on top of loose calm backgrounds, Hussein believes that applying such a contrast, presents all what humans are about, which also reaches their objects.

For almost a year, the young artist has been working on the 27 showcase portraits.  “In”significance  runs until 14 November.

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Wilderness: Exhibit explores artists' longing for a lost paradise Fri, 02 Nov 2018 15:55:00 +0000 The post Wilderness: Exhibit explores artists' longing for a lost paradise appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

More than half of the animal kingdom has been wiped out since 1970, according to the WWF. A timely exhibition in Frankfurt — “Wilderness” — features art works that celebrates the wild, untamed and unculivated.In the 21st century, wilderness is more mythical than real, with very few blank spots left on world maps that have not been disturbed by human civilization.

In response, Schirn Kunsthalle in Frankfurt has dedicated an entire exhibition to the increasingly obsolete notion of "Wilderness," with a display of works spanning more than a century that include paintings, photography and computer simulations.

Read more: 2018 wildlife photography winners highlight nature's beauty

Seemingly natural

Much of the artwork on show originates at the peak of industrialization when there was an increased longing for untouched wilderness. According to Schirn Kunsthalle director Philipp Demandt, pristine nature has long been held up in contrast to humankind's "overly controlled" world.

Yet the term wilderness has also long had held negative connotations. According the Demandt, it has long been associated with "darkness and danger," for example, with artists often portraying towering mountains, precipitous rock formations, dark forests and waterfalls, even into the Romance period in the late 19th century when the beauty of and mankind's longing for nature had become the focus.

The museum's curator Esther Schlicht travelled to the US, Africa and across Europe to find the 34 works of widely varying artists now presented at Schirn Kunsthalle. The works span a period of more than 100 years.

Read more: King of the Animals: the Willhem Kuhnert retrospective

International perspectives

Contemporary artists often take a different point of view to impressionistic landscape painters of the past, for instance, with an approach much more critical of civilization, sometimes taking a clear political stand.

Many artists deliberately left their studios to paint in the wild, others were inspired during their travels by nature left untouched.

The unique thematic exhi­bi­tion presents works of art from 1900 to the present, with the 30 artists on show inlcuding Tacita Dean, Mark Dion, Jean Dubuf­fet, Max Ernst, Asger Jorn, Geor­gia O’Keeffe, Gerhard Richter, Frank Stella, Thomas Struth, Henri Rous­seau und Carle­ton E. Watkins.

Click on the picture gallery for a selection of works by some of these revered international artists.

"Wilderness" runs November 2 through February 3, 2019.

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2018 International Highrise Award goes to Mexico's Torre Reforma Thu, 01 Nov 2018 12:09:00 +0000 The post 2018 International Highrise Award goes to Mexico's Torre Reforma appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

The Frankfurt-based tip-top architecture prize described the winning skyscraper in Mexico City as “the world’s most innovative highrise.” Architect L. Benjamin Romano designed the building with earthquakes in mind.The Frankfurt-based international architecture prize recognizing excellence in skyscraper design was unanimously awarded to the office building Torre Reforma in Mexico City, the jury announced on Thursday.

The jury of the International Highrise Award (Internationaler Hochhaus Preis; IHP) praised L. Benjamin Romano's 246-meter (807-foot) tall building for its "intelligent support structure" against the city's frequent earthquakes, which also lends the office building its "striking appearance."

"Benjamin Romano takes the Aztec building traditions up and interprets them in a modern way," the jury added in its award decision.

The group of architecture experts also highlighted the exemplary financing behind Torre Reforma: "The group of investors in Torre Reforma … considers their projects as long-term investments and therefore places emphasis on careful planning, high-quality materials and perfect detailing. This forward-looking economic approach also affects the architectural design positively and could thereby also serve as a blueprint for successful projects beyond Mexico’s borders."

Romano described the IHP prize as "especially valuable because it comes from my peers … who can appreciate not only a building on itself but the inherent financial, structural, environmental and normative challenges. I believe that the best architecture is the one that finds the answer to these challenges."

A high honor in architecture

The IHP goes to building "that combines exemplary sustainability, external shape and internal spatial quality, not to mention social aspects, to create a model design."

Eligible skyscrapers must be at least 100 meters (328 feet) tall and must have been built within the past two years.

The award has been bestowed every two years since 2004 by the City of Frankfurt, the German Architecture Museum and DekaBank. The winning design team of planners and developers receives a €50,000 ($56,900) prize and a statuette made by German artist Thomas Demand.

In 2016, Danish architect Bjarke Ingel's pyramid-like building in Manhattan took home the prize.

Romano's 2018 winning design was one of five finalists, with the others located in Bangkok, Beirut, Beijing and Singapore. They had been selected out of 36 nominations from 15 countries.

All the nominated projects will be exhibited from November 3 through March 3, 2019, at the German Architecture Museum in Frankfurt as part of the exhibition, "Best Highrises 2018/19 – International Highrise Award 2018."

Take a look at the 2018 prize finalists in our picture gallery at the top of the page.

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Palau plans sunscreen ban to save coral Thu, 01 Nov 2018 11:02:00 +0000 The post Palau plans sunscreen ban to save coral appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

The tiny Pacific island nation of Palau will ban “reef-toxic” sunscreens from 2020 in what it claims is a world-first initiative to stop chemical pollution killing its famed corals.Palau, which lies in the western Pacific about halfway between Australia and Japan, is regarded as one of the world's best diving destinations, but the government is concerned its popularity is coming at a cost. A spokesman for President Tommy Remengesau said there was scientific evidence that the chemicals found in most sunscreens are toxic to corals, even in minute doses.

He said Palau's dive sites typically hosted about four boats an hour packed with tourists, leading to concerns a build-up of chemicals could see the reefs reach tipping point. "On any given day that equates to gallons of sunscreen going into the ocean in Palau's famous dive spots and snorkelling places," he said. "We're just looking at what we can do to prevent pollution getting into the environment."

The government has passed a law banning "reef-toxic" sunscreen from January 1, 2020. Anyone importing or selling banned sunscreen from that date faces a fine of 1,000 US Dollar, while tourists who bring it into the country will have it confiscated.

The US state of Hawaii announced a ban on reef toxic sunscreens in May this year, but it does not come into force until 2021, a year after Palau's.

ak/ey (AFP)

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