Egypt / by Alistair Galloway

The staggered election process to determine the new Egyptian parliament saw a relatively low turnout of voters, yet an overwhelming number of pro-government candidates in the proceedings, suggesting towards a continuation of support for President al-Sisi’s line of rule. Egypt rejected a resolution by European Parliament which called for the state to release Egyptian-Irish prisoner Ibrahim Hussein Halawa, stating that the resolution violated the sovereign legal system of Egypt. Several UK travel operators implemented lengthy flight suspensions to Sharm el-Sheikh following the suspected bombing of a Russian plane in October which killed 224 people in the region, suggesting that the situation in Egypt is still very fragile and that security measures in Egypt were not of adequate standard in order for foreign visitors to enter the country. A roadside bomb killed four security personnel in Rafah and a suicide bomb attacks killed an Egyptian soldier in the North Sinai El Arish area. Such attacks demonstrate the continued threat of Islamic insurgents who target security, military and government personnel and such attacks are unlikely to diminish in the near future. Egypt signed a $600 million deal with the European Investment Bank for a high efficiency combined cycle gas turbine power plant project which aims to supply power to 4 million people in a highly efficient, low emission producing way. Egypt agreed to a €32 million deal with the European Union in order to support water development projects in the state which will provide employment to local people as well as alleviating the state’ economic situation by using grants to provide a key service to citizens.