Car Bomb Kills 13 in Mansoura
The city of Mansoura in the Nile Delta witnessed a massive explosion earlier today, which left 13 people dead and over 130 injured. Among the people killed were eight policeman. Egyptian government officials have been quick to blame the Muslim Brotherhood, who they say detonated the bomb or bombs as a retaliatory attack for events in August, when Egyptian security forces violently dispersed two major protest sit-ins and killed hundreds of protesters. The Muslim Brotherhood condemned the blast and denied any involvement. There is still disagreement over the cause of the blast: some officials have said that there were three bombs (two which exploded simultaneously) while another security source said that the source of the explosion came from a truck laden with explosives.
A Solution to Hepatitis C in Egypt?
Egypt has the highest number of people in the world suffering from Hepatitis C, but a better way to treat the disease may be on the way. Most Egyptian patients suffer from genotype 4 Hepatitis C, and scientists have reported that a combination of new drugs may be the ticket to managing and possibly eradicating this disease, which can lead to cirrhosis of the liver, liver cancer, and death. In 2008 almost 10 percent of the population was infected with Hepatitis C. The FDA approved a combination of two new drugs which are said to be very effective and have little to no side effects, but Egyptians may have to wait until April to be able to purchase them.
Egypt Among the Worst Countries for Jailing Journalists
According to a recent report by the Committee to Protect Journalists, Egypt is one of the top ten worst countries in the world for its propensity to put journalists behind bars. 2012 and 2013 were the two worst years on record, because the state imprisoned 211 and 232 journalists, respectively. A journalist with Al Jazeera, Abdullah al-Shami, recently started a hunger strike along with 322 other prisoners to protest the terrible conditions of their cells. Al-Shami has been held in pre-trial detention since mid-August, when he was arrested during the army’s crackdown on protest encampments; his detention was just extended another 45 days.
First Women to Head Doctor’s Union
Mona Mina, a pediatrician, activist, and founding member of the advocacy group ‘Doctors Without Rights’ was elected the head of the Doctor’s Union in Egypt. Mina, who participated in the Tahrir Square protests in 2011 and was beaten for trying to treat protesters, is the first woman to hold the position. During her campaign, she promised to fight for patient’s rights, including the right to not be turned away from hospitals for severe or critical injuries. Mina also promised to institute a partial strike in January to pressure the government to meet “the demands of doctors.” According to Egypt Independent, Egypt’s healthcare budget is less than 1 percent of the global average.
South Sudan Ethnic Killings
The conflict in South Sudan between forces loyal to the former vice president and state security forces is ongoing, and new evidence is emerging that the fighting is breaking down over ethnic lines. More than 200 people from one ethnic group, the Nuer, were apparently targeted and shot by state security forces, and members of the Dinka are targeting and attacking the Nuer. Over 500 people have been killed and more than 80,000 have been displaced since the conflict began last week.