Stories written by Cam McGrath
Cam McGrath is a Cairo-based correspondent. He joined IPS in 2001 and reports on politics, human rights and environmental issues in Egypt and the Arab world.

Cairo’s Poor Convert Kitchen Waste Into Fuel Savings

The bio-gas digester on the roof of Hussein Farag's apartment in one of Cairo's poorest districts provides a daily supply of cooking gas produced from the kitchen waste his family would otherwise discard in plastic bags or empty into the clogged sewer below his building.

Egyptian NGOs Fear Law That Would Cripple Civil Society

A controversial bill backed by Egypt's ruling Muslim Brotherhood and submitted to the Islamist-dominated legislature surpasses previous laws used to repress Egyptian civil society, rights watchdogs say.

Spring Brings Worse for Shias

The mob that surrounded the home of Mohamed Nour, an Egyptian Shia living in Cairo’s Bab El-Shaariya district, claimed it was on a mission to “inoculate” Egypt against Shia religious beliefs. Without intervention, Shia doctrine would spread across Egypt “like a cancer,” they had warned.

Missing Christian Girls Leave Trail of Tears

When a young Christian girl goes missing in the Egyptian port city of Alexandria, her family will call on a certain Muslim sheikh in the nearby town of El-Ameriya.

Inhospitable Flows the Nile

A 4,200-year-old relief in the Tomb of Mereruka in Sakkara depicts the staggering array of fish that once inhabited the Nile River and its wetlands. Ancient Egyptian fishermen with linen nets haul in their bounty, including the sacred Oxyrhynchus, a snub-nosed fish that was captured and nurtured but never eaten.

Net Tightens Around Fishing in Egypt

For Egypt’s commercial marine fishermen, making a living has never been more dangerous. Egyptian crews driven further afield in search of fish have faced pirate attacks, spent months in dingy foreign prisons, and come under fire from coast guard vessels. Dozens of fishermen have been held for ransom, abused by authorities, or shot and killed.

Democracy Tastes Bitter as Poverty Bites

On a recent Friday, coppersmith Alaa Moussa parked himself in the same spot where two years earlier he had stood defiantly with a handwritten banner addressed to then president Hosni Mubarak. His petition that cold February morning in 2011 had listed the key demands of Egypt’s 18-day uprising: “bread, freedom, dignity”.

New Regime, Same Police Brutality

Graphic video footage of an Egyptian man being dragged naked across a street and beaten by riot police during a protest in Cairo has sparked outrage in Egypt and heightened calls for police reform, a key demand of the 2011 uprising that toppled dictator Hosni Mubarak.

Morsi Slams New Lid on Labour Rights

Workers played a pivotal role in the mass uprising that led to former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak’s downfall. Now, two years on, the same labour movement that helped topple the Arab dictator is locked in a stalemate with the government and employers over long-denied labour rights and untenable working conditions.

Criticising the President no Laughing Matter

Egyptians love to have a good laugh. At every opportunity they rattle off jokes and take jabs at themselves, their society, and – where they dare – their ruler.

Egyptian Pulse Running Weak

Hospitalised for impaired kidney function, Eman El-Behery needed three medicines to bring her diabetes under control. Her daughter, 16-year-old Reham, found two of the medications at a pharmacy across the road from the hospital, but after hours of searching was unable to find the third, a drug that dilates blood vessels in the kidneys to prevent damage.

Islamist Vigilantes Begin to Police Egypt

As Egyptians debate how deeply Sharia should influence the new constitution, and in the face of clashes that left five dead on Wednesday, some extremists have taken to the streets to enforce their own interpretation of "God’s law". In recent months, these self-appointed guardians of public probity have accosted Muslims and minority Christians they accuse of violating the provisions of Islamic law.

Elected a President, Got a Dictator

Brandishing flags and carrying banners denouncing “the new pharaoh”, thousands of protesters thronged to Cairo’s Tahrir Square on Tuesday to voice their opposition to President Mohamed Morsi’s attempt to expand his powers.

Briefly President, Now Pharaoh

When Mohamed Mursi was sworn in as president in June there were concerns that the first democratically elected president in Egyptian history would be subservient to the military council that had ruled the country since dictator Hosni Mubarak was toppled in early 2011.

Radical Clerics Seek to Legalise Child Brides

An ultraconservative Salafi cleric recently sparked outrage among Egypt’s liberal circles when he attempted to justify his opposition to a proposed constitutional article that would outlaw the trafficking of women for sex.

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