The Egyptian city of Port Said is the northern gateway to one of the world's key shipping lanes, the Suez Canal connecting the Mediterranean Sea with the Red Sea. With its ornate buildings and clean streets, the sprawling city has one of the highest standards of living in Egypt.
But this year, Port Said has become known for something more sinister: It was the site of Egypt's deadliest soccer riot.
Many of the city's officials and residents say the tragedy has destroyed Port Said's reputation and left them in financial trouble.
Egyptians protest outside the administrative court in the capital, Cairo, on Tuesday. The protesters are calling for the panel drafting the constitution to be made up entirely of non-parliamentarians. Controversy swirls around the 100-member panel — handpicked by Islamist lawmakers — which includes only a handful of women and Christians.
The Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamist groups in Egypt are flexing their growing political muscle. They control the legislative agenda in parliament, and in recent weeks introduced controversial proposals to curb social freedoms and legal rights.
Islamist lawmakers also handpicked a 100-member panel that began meeting this week to write a new constitution, which is widely expected to enshrine Islamic law.
Even so, Islamist leaders say they want Egypt to remain a secular state. But many secular Egyptians are not convinced.
After clashes between protesters and security forces, Cairo's police erected walls to keep demonstrators away from the Interior Ministry. Street artists then painted this wall across Sheik Rihan Street.
Supporters of an Egyptian Islamist candidate hold his posters as they drive through Cairo on Friday. If Abu Ismail is elected he plans to apply a strict interpretation of Islamic law.
Credit Amro Maraghi / AFP/Getty Images
In the sign of the bigger cultural struggle in a post-Mubarak Egypt, a court has ordered the government to ban pornographic Internet sites.
One of the big questions facing Egypt now that Hosni Mubarak's 30-year rule has ended is what kind of role religion will play in the new government. Some of the Islamists who control parliament have expressed that they would like the country ruled by sharia.
Originally published on Thu March 29, 2012 7:06 am
Samira Ibrahim, an Egyptian woman who brought the case against an army doctor accused of conducting forced "virginity checks" on female protesters last year, breaks into tears outside a military court in Cairo on March 11 after hearing that the doctor was acquitted.
For Samira Ibrahim, and many other Egyptians, the struggle to remake their country didn't end with the ouster last year of Hosni Mubarak.
Ibrahim, a 25-year-old from southern Egypt, was arrested by the military during a protest in Cairo's Tahrir Square in March of last year, a month after Mubarak was overthrown.
While in custody, Ibrahim said, she and six other young women were subjected to a so-called "virginity check" — a forced penetration to check for hymen blood. Amnesty International has called the procedure a form of torture.