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.

Mubarak Cronies Find Comfort in Exile

Wanted members of the regime of former president Hosni Mubarak remain at large more than a year since he was ousted, and their illicit wealth lies safely beyond the reach of prosecutors.

Egypt-US Standoff Could Hit 40,000 NGOs

The ongoing crackdown by Egypt’s military rulers on a handful of civil society groups accused of receiving illegal foreign funds has far-reaching implications for the estimated 40,000 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) operating in the Arab world’s most populous country.

Chinese Feed Illegal Ivory Trade

The illegal trade in ivory continues in Egypt, with ivory products sold openly in local tourist markets by traders who operate with impunity, a new study by the conservation group Traffic has found.

EGYPT: Arab Spring Gives Way to Military Chill

When Egypt’s dictator was ousted during a popular uprising last February, the military leaders who assumed control of the country pledged to "protect the revolution" and ensure a swift transition to civilian rule within six months. One year later, the ruling generals appear to have hijacked the transition to preserve the military institution’s economic autonomy and secure their own political future.

EGYPT: Lending to Repression, Again

For three decades Western governments and lending institutions bankrolled a corrupt regime in Egypt that trampled human rights and stifled democracy. Now they appear ready to do it again, say critics of the military council that has ruled since removing president Hosni Mubarak last February.

EGYPT: Military Rulers Clamp Down on Civil Society

Raids on the Cairo offices of civil society organisations accused of receiving unauthorised foreign funds are part of a wider campaign by Egypt’s ruling military council to silence its critics, say rights groups.

Demonstrators in Cairo hold up used tear gas shells. Credit: Cam McGrath/IPS.

Deadly Gas Enters the Arab Spring

Activists across the Middle East are reporting a mysterious toxin, possibly a banned nerve agent, in the thick clouds of tear gas used by security forces to suppress anti-government protests in recent months.

EGYPT: Round One Goes to the Islamists

Islamists appear poised for a landslide victory in the first round of Egypt's parliamentary elections, putting them on track to secure a majority in the country's first parliament since the fall of president Hosni Mubarak.

EGYPT: Military More Repressive Than Mubarak

Egyptians hoping for greater freedoms and less police brutality after the fall of president Hosni Mubarak say the military council that has ruled in his place has carried on the ex-dictator's brutal legacy, and in some cases exceeded it.

Egyptians Launch New Battle for Minimum Wage

Mohamed El-Abyad's employer has agreed to increase his salary by 20 percent, but the factory worker still cannot afford to send his children to school. After paying his apartment rent and utilities, El-Abyad will have the equivalent of 20 dollars left over each month to put food on his family's table. And while education is mandatory, he pulled both his sons out of school to help cover the shortfall.

EGYPT: Mubarak Men Begin to Resurface

Members of the regime of ousted dictator Hosni Mubarak have demanded to be allowed to run in upcoming elections and warned of violence if legislation to prohibit their political ambitions is passed.

EGYPT: Bumpy Ride to a New Human Rights City

The upheaval of the Arab Spring has provided fertile ground to plant the seed of a new framework for human rights that moves beyond monitoring violations. Rights advocates want to integrate human rights into the fabric of daily life and are working at the community level to establish the first Human Rights City in the Middle East.

EGYPT: ‘Invisible Hand’ Playing With Sectarian Fire

Violent clashes in Cairo that left at least 25 Egyptians dead and over 300 injured on Sunday have deepened suspicions that unseen forces are manipulating the country's sectarian divisions for political gain.

EGYPT: Mubarak Faces Court Without the Circus

With the trial of Hosni Mubarak set to resume Monday, attorneys representing the families of protesters killed during Egypt’s uprising are trying to cut out the deadwood in their midst.

EGYPT: Military Trials on the Rise After Mubarak

Amr El-Beheiry’s trial in a military court lasted just five minutes. The 33-year- old Egyptian was arrested on Feb. 26 and sentenced without a lawyer present to five years in prison for breaking curfew and assaulting a public official during a demonstration in Cairo.

EGYPT: The Mubarak Show Goes Into Hiding

In a shuttered Cairo café, Egyptians crane their necks to watch the courtroom drama unfolding on a small television screen mounted high on the wall. The camera pans across the crowded courtroom and zooms in on a frail old man lying on a stretcher inside the caged defendants' box. Part Godfather, part Hannibal Lecter, he is the feared head of a powerful family at the centre of a web of violence and corruption. Beside him are his two sons, one known for shady business deals, the other groomed to head the cartel.

EGYPT: Labour Unions Shake Off Old Masters

The trade union federation that ex-dictator Hosni Mubarak used to repress labour movements and mobilise regime support for sham elections during his 30-year rule has been disbanded, striking a powerful blow to the old order.

EGYPT: State Media has New Bosses, Old Habits

Six months since the fall of Hosni Mubarak, the state media organs that once glorified the dictator's policies and glossed over his failures have new leaders. Yet the mindset of decades of authoritarian rule remains intact, say media experts.

JORDAN: Ripe for Reform, Slow to Change

Having weathered the maelstrom that engulfed the Middle East earlier this year, Jordan's government has faced simmering unrest as protesters continue to press for political and economic reforms.

Egypt Embraces Oil Monarchs, Dubiously

With the nation's economy in tatters from the uprising that ousted its dictator of 30 years, Egypt's transitional government has turned its back on the Western lending institutions that once propped the Mubarak regime. But its decision to accept the massive aid packages dangled by the oil-rich Arab Gulf states has raised suspicions about their intentions, as well as its own.

Egyptian fishermen are using increasingly fine nets to catch scarce fish.  Credit: Cam McGrath/IPS.

EGYPT: Fishing Dangerously for Quick Net Worth

Ali Mohsen knows how to tell a good fish story. The wiry, white-haired Egyptian mariner weaves a yarn about his childhood days when the sea was so full of fish that one could simply dangle a hand net over the side of the boat and pull up a seafood dinner. This morning, his crew spent hours out at sea with only four kilos of small fish to show for it.

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