"Mandatory quotas remain a contentious issue," Tusk told a joint news conference with the Commission's head Jean-Claude Juncker, the disagreement between the two playing out visibly despite their usually friendly rapport. "Relocation is not a solution to the issue of illegal migration. ""Will a compromise be possible? "I am not a fan of qualified majority decision-taking but... it can be used," Juncker said. "Some of our colleagues were openly saying yesterday night that if there is no progress, they will propose qualified majority decision-making procedure.
December 15, 2017 17:15 UTC
Photograph of the Temple of Luxor in Egypt, July 28, 2016 – Wikimedia/AdaVegas TravelCAIRO – 15 December 2017: The 10th edition of Luxor International Painting Symposium has begun in Luxor this weekend, featuring the talents of 25 artists, both Egyptian and international.Running until December 24, the Symposium is organized by the Culture Development Fund and the City of Luxor's Supreme Council. The artists will spend two weeks working on the project in studios at site of the old Gourna Village, in an area filled with rich archaeological sites and cemeteries.Artists from countries such as Lithuania, Ethiopia, Romania, Azerbaijan, Nepal, Serbia, Italy, Nigeria and Russia are participating, alongside Arab artists from Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq. The aim of the Symposium will be to foster an international exchange between people from Egypt and other nations. Completed works will be displayed by the CDF in a new museum and in other establishments.Some of the Egyptian artists participating are Fatma Abdel-Rahman, Noha Nagui, Shereen el-Baroudy, Weaam el-Masry, Noha Nagui and more.
December 15, 2017 17:03 UTC
Wreckage from a plane that crashed into Colombian jungle with Brazilian soccer team Chapecoense, is seen near Medellin, Colombia, November 29, 2016. REUTERS/Fredy BuilesCAIRO - 15 December 2017: A civil training aircraft crashed in Fayyoum governorate southwest of Cairo on Friday, killing all its crew members, Board Chairman of the Egyptian Aviation Academy Elias Sadeq said on Friday.The Beechcraft Baron 58 came down after a sudden technical failure during a training mission over a desert area in northern Lake Moeris, he added.The three-member crew were killed in the incident, he noted.
December 15, 2017 16:52 UTC
Defense ministers of Egypt, Greece, Cyprus at Larnaca, Thursday December 14, 2017- Press PhotoCAIRO – 15 December 2017: Egypt’s Defense Minister Sedky Sobhy and his Cypriot and Greek counterparts agreed on developing and enhancing the tripartite military trainings between their countries during the coming period to counter the dangers of terrorism.During Sobhy’s visit to Cyprus he met with counterparts; Christoforos Fokaides of Cyprus, and Panos Kammenos of Greece. They discussed several issues during their tripartite summit that was held in Larnaca city at the Zenon Coordinating Centre, including combating terrorism, search and rescue trainings, securing maritime targets, and energy and navigation lines.Sobhy also held separate meetings with Fokaides, and Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades, as they praised the two countries’ strong relations especially after President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi’s last visit, in which he held another tripartite summit with his Greek and Cypriot counterparts last November.Sobhy arrived in the Cyprus capital Nicosia on Tuesday upon an invitation of his Cypriot counterpart.Egypt, Greece and Cyprus gave the international community a model for successful international relations and cooperation between countries, according to Sisi’s statements during a meeting with the Cypriot parliament head in Nicosia, describing the unique relations between the three governments.He added that the relations between Egypt, Greece and Cyprus are strong and historical. The visit to Nicosia was the first for an Egyptian president and included more than several meetings between Sisi and some of the state’s senior officials.It included attending the fifth Egyptian-Greek-Cypriot tripartite summit in which several topics were tackled, including coordination between the three countries, as well as enhancing the relations in the political, economic, trade, security and tourism fields.
December 15, 2017 16:30 UTC
Minister of Civil Aviation Sharif Fathi - ReutersCAIRO – 15 December 2017: Egypt and Russia signed a protocol on Friday which will resume flights between the two countries, according to Russia Today.Russian Transport Minister Maxim Sokolov also stated on Friday that the Russian airline company Aeroflot expressed its interest to resume Cairo-Moscow regular flights, according to Sputnik.According to the report, the Russian airline company reopened its Cairo-based bureau again.Earlier on Friday, the Russian Transport Minister announced that Cairo airport has been at an acceptable standard, since it implement the necessary aviation security requirements. "We can confidently say the resumption of Cairo-Moscow flights will be restored in the first half of February, unless any negative events or other changes emerge.” Soklov said.Russia suspended flights with Egypt in October 2015 after a Russian passenger plane crashed in Sinai. All 224 people on board, mostly Russian nationals, were killed. The Russian plane incident was identified by President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi as terror attack.
December 15, 2017 16:18 UTC
© Belga/AFP / by Alex PIGMAN | Overhauling the eurozone has been a top priority of French President Emmanuel Macron, but his ambitions have been stymied by political uncertainty in GermanyBRUSSELS - 15 December 2017: Germany and France will offer their joint vision for reforming the eurozone by March, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday, in an effort to bridge divisions over the future of the single currency.Meeting without departure-bound Britain, the bloc's 27 leaders were tasked by EU President Donald Tusk to speak freely about their often clashing visions for the single currency's future at a summit widely expected to be dominated by Brexit.Overhauling the eurozone and making it more resilient to economic shocks has been a top priority of French President Emmanuel Macron, as well as European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker.But these ambitions have been stymied by political uncertainty in Germany, where Macron-ally Merkel is still trying to form a government after the pro-business FDP party abandoned talks amid doubts about eurozone reform. "We will find a common position because it is necessary for Europe," Merkel said at a news briefing, speaking alongside Macron after a summit that was dominated by Brexit.Merkel's overture to France will rankle her conservative CDU party, which toes a austerity-minded line on economic matters.Reform of the eurozone is often blocked in a political split, with rich countries -- such as Germany and the Netherlands -- reticent to adopt policies that share risks with their heavily-indebted eurozone partners, such as France, Spain, Italy or Greece.The Netherlands pushed its austerity-driven vision of the eurozone at the summit, with Prime Minister Mark Rutte demanding reforms by overspending governments. "I noticed that with a certain number of our colleagues that with the euro we always talk money... not how we can make our economies more competitive," Rutte said after the talks.The resistance has so far blocked Macron's idea of a eurozone budget and held up the creation of a Europe-wide deposit insurance scheme, the last remaining pillar of the banking union. "To us, it is more important to make some member states more resilient for the next financial crisis," an EU diplomat said.- 'Large consensus' -The loss of momentum was confirmed in proposals last week by the European Commission, the executive arm of the EU, that put off more ambitious ideas, such as the creation of a European finance minister, until after European elections in 2019.The original plan was for leaders to discuss a range of topics on Friday, with a further summit in June to table concrete decisions.According to EU President Donald Tusk, who coordinates the summits, there exists a "large consensus" to create a European Monetary Fund that would function as a financial firewall to any new financial crisis and handle bailouts.There is also support to complete the banking union, albeit at a very gradual pace.
December 15, 2017 15:22 UTC
Policemen beat up a protester during a rally against fuel subsidy removal on Ikorodu road in Nigeria's commercial capital Lagos January 3, 2012. REUTERS/Akintunde AkinleyeABUJA - 15 December 2017: Nigerian residents said more than 10 illegal miners have been killed in northeast Nigeria's Mambilla region after clashing with police, ABC News reported.Hammadu Bello said Friday that police tried to dislodge the miners in the Mayo Sine area on Thursday, destroying temporary living structures set up on land allocated to a mining company.Another resident, Joseph Kataps, said the miners retaliated and attacked police, who opened fire.Police spokesman David Misal confirmed that illegal miners attacked police in Mambilla but said no further details are immediately available.Some 10,000 illegal miners operate on lands designated for mining companies in the area.
December 15, 2017 15:22 UTC
Minister of Defence, Sedki Sobhi - FILE PHOTOCAIRO - 15 December 2017: Defense Minister Sedqi Sobhi returned home on Friday, wrapping up an official visit to Cyprus.During the visit, Sobhi held a meeting with Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades to discuss means of boosting bilateral relations in the security and military fields.Sobhi also signed an agreement with his Cypriot counterpart Christophoros Fokaides in the field of search and rescue.Sobhi held a tripartite meeting with his Greek and Cypriot counterparts to discuss challenges besetting the Middle East region and the anti-terror war.
File - Security borders around a church in EgyptFile - Minister of Interior, Magdy Abdel GhaffarFile - Securiy forces infront of a churche in EgyptFile - Egyptian security forcesCAIRO – 15 December 2017: Minister of Interior Magdy Abdel Ghaffar prepares for Christmas with strong safety measures, especially at places of worship.The ministry is preparing security services to be uninterrupted and available for people in cases of emergency, according to a high profile source in the ministry under condition anonymity.All security service departments have made the necessary arrangements to make Christmas celebrations safe and joyous for all Egyptians, the source stated.The ministry confirmed the importance of intensifying the presence of security forces around public areas and places of worship to be able to deal immediately and decisively with any attempt to disturb the holiday celebrations of Egypt's citizens.According to the security plans, security forces will apply 800-meter “safe areas” around churches and provide explosive detection devices to counter any attempts to target places of worship, the source added.Security forces will implement security procedures for all 2,326 churches in Egypt, including all 1,326 Orthodox churches, 1,100 protestant churches and 200 catholic churches.Moreover, the ministry will provide a number of vehicles to be used by security patrols. The vehicles will include a detention room able to accommodate six suspects at a time.The vehicles are equipped with state of the art technology, communication equipment and connectivity, supported by CCTV, ANPR and SCOUT-APP camera systems, to monitor and document the security situation on roads and main axes and to identify license plate numbers.Police patrols will target rented flats around places of worship in different governorates, which terrorists sometimes use as headquarter for planning attacks and preparing explosives. Forces will also target extremists in remote areas, based on acquired intelligence information.The Abbasiya Patriarchate, where the Patriarch of the Coptic Orthodox Church, headed by Pope Tawadros II, prepares for Christmas on January 6, 2018; coinciding with the finalization of restoration work for the Grand Church in the cathedral where Christmas Mass will be held on the holy night.
Paying homage to that tradition, the exhibition featured some original Alexandrian streets’ nameplates. The plan of establishing a list of street names and numbering buildings took around 10 years, until it was officially established in 1901. The first nameplates Alexandria has ever known were made of enamel-coated steel sheets, with a ribbon on the corner. In 1997 and 2000, new nameplates started appearing on the streets of Alexandria. But beyond the country’s history, residents of the old city bear emotional links to its streets, and many special memories that deserve to be celebrated.
Lebanon's Interior Minister Nohad Machnouk talks after closing the polling stations during Beirut's municipal elections in the Interior ministry in Beirut, Lebanon May 8, 2016. REUTERS/Mohamed AzakirBEIRUT - 15 December 2017: Lebanon's Interior Minister Nohad Machnouk on Friday set up a long-delayed parliamentary election to be held under new rules for May 6 next year.Parliament had extended its own mandate three times since current lawmakers were elected in 2009 for what was meant to be a four-year term.A new law creates a proportional representation system for parliament and alters the number of districts from which lawmakers are elected. The election will also be the first where the large number of Lebanese citizens abroad can vote. When registration closed in late November 92,810 had registered to cast their ballot, the foreign minister said at the time.Machnouk said Lebanese abroad would be able to vote on April 22 and 28.
Imran Khan, chairman of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) political party, gestures as he addresses members of the media, after Pakistan's Supreme Court dismissed a petition to disqualify him from parliament for not declaring assets, outside Jinnah InterISLAMABAD - 15 December 2017: Pakistan’s Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a petition to disqualify cricket hero and opposition leader Imran Khan from parliament for not declaring assets, months after former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was removed by the court on a similar charge.The ruling was hailed as a vindication by Khan’s opposition Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party but drew questions from Sharif’s ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, which had filed the case.The two parties will contest general elections in 2018, along with the Pakistan People’s Party and several smaller parties.“No dishonesty or omission can be attributed to (Khan). This petition has no merits and is hereby dismissed,” Chief Justice Saqib Nisar told the court.Khan had led the legal drive that led to Sharif being disqualified in July over unreported income and the opening of a criminal corruption case against the former prime minister.A lawmaker from Sharif’s ruling party filed a separate complaint late last year alleging Khan and PTI secretary general Jahangir Tareen owned offshore companies and had not disclosed their assets.While Khan was cleared on Friday, the Supreme Court disqualified Tareen.“The respondent is declared not to be an honest person. He ceased to be member of the parliament. The respondent is disqualified,” Nisar said of Tareen.PTI spokesman Naeem Ul Haq said the party was disappointed with the judgment on Tareen.A senior PML-N leader, Miftah Ismial, told Reuters the party accepted Friday’s Supreme Court decision as final.“However, not being a lawyer I don’t follow how Imran Khan was not considered an owner of the offshore company ... given that the flat owned by it was only used by Imran Khan and the sale proceeds from the flat also went to Imran Khan.”Sharif’s supporters have alleged that some elements of Pakistan’s military may have had a hand in the court’s disqualification of the former prime minister.
December 15, 2017 14:26 UTC
Arsenal's Kim Kallstrom celebrates after scoring a penalty in their penalty shoot-out during their English FA Cup semi-final soccer match against Wigan Athletic at Wembley Stadium in London April 12, 2014. REUTERS/Eddie Keogh/File PhotoSTOCKHOLM– 15 December 2017:Former Arsenal and Olympique Lyonnais midfielder Kim Kallstrom announced on Friday he is calling time on a football career that stretched over almost two decades. "I feel I'm done, and I've done what I can on the field," the tearful 35-year-old told reporters at an emotional news conference in Stockholm. "It's fun to play matches at the weekend, but you have to be able to do the work during the week. I feel I lack the energy there.
December 15, 2017 14:15 UTC
Protesters chant slogans during a protest against U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, in Tunis, Tunisia, December 7, 2017. REUTERS/Zoubeir SouissiRAMALLAH - 15 December 2017: Thousands of Palestinians took to the streets of various districts in the West Bank, Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip after Friday prayers in a "Day of Rage" to protest against US President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.Israeli occupation forces set up hundreds of roadblocks in Jerusalem and the West Bank to hinder the movement of the Palestinians and reporters, and provided more security reinforcements along with tens of vehicles.The Palestine Red Crescent said that about 23 Palestinians were shot and injured in clashes with occupation forces who fired live and rubber-coated bullets and tear-gas canisters at Palestinians in various areas of the West Bank.Demonstrations were held in Jerusalem, Ramallah, Hebron, Bethlehem and Nablus, while occupation forces dispersed the protesters and attacked them.Israeli occupation forces arrested three Palestinian citizens including a journalist in southeastern Tubas district.
December 15, 2017 13:41 UTC
President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi receives his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, December 11, 2017 – Press PhotoCAIRO – 15 December 2017: The Head of the Russian contact group in Libya, Lev Dengov, firmly denied rumors regarding a Russian plan to use Egyptian air bases to launch air strikes against terrorists in Libya, according to Russia Today.Dengov stated that these kinds of decisions can only be taken by the Russian leadership, or with the approval of the UN Security Council.“We do not pay attention to these things, because we are only working to restore peace in Libya," he said.Earlier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that Moscow is ready to support agreements aimed at resolving the Libya issue.During his meeting with the Libyan Minister of Foreign Affairs Taher Siala, Lavrov noted that Russia is ready to facilitate the implementation of agreements in every possible way, the Russian Tass news agency reported.
December 15, 2017 13:30 UTC