Mubarak stays, and army faces test of stability



The roar in Tahrir Square last night was not of triumph, but that "he must leave". President Hosni Mubarak rebuffed widespread speculation that he would resign, instead repeating his promise to abstain from the next elections, amend the constitution and seek justice for casualties in the recent protests. The transfer of some powers to Vice President Omar Suleiman made hardly a dent on sentiment in the square.

It is clear that the hundreds of thousands on the streets are not satisfied with these concessions. After Friday prayers, Egypt's stability will very likely be tested again.

Before Mr Mubarak's speech, senior military authorities pledged in a televised address to protect the state and to "support the legitimate demands of the people". The army has a critical role to play, but it must be limited to providing security and stability. The armed forces so far have enjoyed considerable popularity among the people, but their role will be tested further now.

It could be said that the country is experiencing its most pressing crisis in decades. Paradoxically, now is precisely the time to repeal the longstanding emergency law. Mr Mubarak's promise to amend constitutional provisions that relate to the law will have only a limited impact.

With the exception of an 18-month hiatus starting in 1980, the law has governed the lives of ordinary Egyptians for more than four decades. Few acts, save for Mr Mubarak's resignation, have the power to change the tenor on the streets as much as its repeal.

Mr Mubarak has promised to remain in office until September elections while expressing his solidarity with the young people in the square. They, for their part, will remain opposed to his continued rule.

Cutting across religion, class and gender, millions of Egyptians have made their voices heard. One can only hope that the overwhelmingly peaceful nature of the protests continues to prevail.

Before Mr Mubarak's address, other protesters had expressed fears of a military coup. Now, it is incumbent on the armed forces to act with the utmost restraint regarding protesters. This is an unprecedented test of all of Egypt's institutions. How they perform will be remembered by all Egyptians.

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: SmartCrowd
Started: 2018
Founder: Siddiq Farid and Musfique Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech / PropTech
Initial investment: $650,000
Current number of staff: 35
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Various institutional investors and notable angel investors (500 MENA, Shurooq, Mada, Seedstar, Tricap)

ALRAWABI SCHOOL FOR GIRLS

Creator: Tima Shomali

Starring: Tara Abboud, Kira Yaghnam, Tara Atalla

Rating: 4/5

The specs: 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLA

Price, base / as tested Dh150,900 / Dh173,600

Engine 2.0L inline four-cylinder

Transmission Seven-speed automatic

Power 211hp @ 5,500rpm

Torque 350Nm @ 1,200rpm

Fuel economy, combined 6.4L / 100km

FIXTURES

All times UAE (+4 GMT)

Saturday
Fiorentina v Torino (8pm)
Hellas Verona v Roma (10.45pm)

Sunday
Parma v Napoli (2.30pm)
Genoa v Crotone (5pm)
Sassuolo v Cagliari (8pm)
Juventus v Sampdoria (10.45pm)

Monday
AC Milan v Bologna (10.45om)

Playing September 30

Benevento v Inter Milan (8pm)
Udinese v Spezia (8pm)
Lazio v Atalanta (10.45pm)

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: Xpanceo

Started: 2018

Founders: Roman Axelrod, Valentyn Volkov

Based: Dubai, UAE

Industry: Smart contact lenses, augmented/virtual reality

Funding: $40 million

Investor: Opportunity Venture (Asia)

The specs

Engine: four-litre V6 and 3.5-litre V6 twin-turbo

Transmission: six-speed and 10-speed

Power: 271 and 409 horsepower

Torque: 385 and 650Nm

Price: from Dh229,900 to Dh355,000

SM Town Live is on Friday, April 6 at Autism Rocks Arena, Dubai. Tickets are Dh375 at www.platinumlist.net

SPEC SHEET: NOTHING PHONE (2A)

Display: 6.7-inch flexible Amoled, 2,412 x 1,080, 394ppi, 120Hz, Corning Gorilla Glass 5

Processor: MediaTek Dimensity 7,200 Pro, 4nm, octa-core

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Platform: Android 14, Nothing OS 2.5

Main camera: Dual 50MP main, f/1.88 + 50MP ultra-wide, f/2.2; OIS, EIS, auto-focus, ultra XDR, night mode

Main camera video: 4K @ 30fps, full-HD @ 60fps; slo-mo full-HD at 120fps

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Cards: Dual-nano SIM

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Price (UAE): Dh1,199 (8GB/128GB) / Dh1,399 (12GB/256GB)

Company Profile

Company name: Cargoz
Date started: January 2022
Founders: Premlal Pullisserry and Lijo Antony
Based: Dubai
Number of staff: 30
Investment stage: Seed

Herc's Adventures

Developer: Big Ape Productions
Publisher: LucasArts
Console: PlayStation 1 & 5, Sega Saturn
Rating: 4/5

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: Haltia.ai
Started: 2023
Co-founders: Arto Bendiken and Talal Thabet
Based: Dubai, UAE
Industry: AI
Number of employees: 41
Funding: About $1.7 million
Investors: Self, family and friends

BABYLON

Director: Damien Chazelle

Stars: Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Jean Smart

Rating: 4/5

SPECS

Engine: 1.5-litre turbo

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Coming soon

Torno Subito by Massimo Bottura

When the W Dubai – The Palm hotel opens at the end of this year, one of the highlights will be Massimo Bottura’s new restaurant, Torno Subito, which promises “to take guests on a journey back to 1960s Italy”. It is the three Michelinstarred chef’s first venture in Dubai and should be every bit as ambitious as you would expect from the man whose restaurant in Italy, Osteria Francescana, was crowned number one in this year’s list of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants.

Akira Back Dubai

Another exciting opening at the W Dubai – The Palm hotel is South Korean chef Akira Back’s new restaurant, which will continue to showcase some of the finest Asian food in the world. Back, whose Seoul restaurant, Dosa, won a Michelin star last year, describes his menu as,  “an innovative Japanese cuisine prepared with a Korean accent”.

Dinner by Heston Blumenthal

The highly experimental chef, whose dishes are as much about spectacle as taste, opens his first restaurant in Dubai next year. Housed at The Royal Atlantis Resort & Residences, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal will feature contemporary twists on recipes that date back to the 1300s, including goats’ milk cheesecake. Always remember with a Blumenthal dish: nothing is quite as it seems. 

Roll of honour 2019-2020

Dubai Rugby Sevens
Winners: Dubai Hurricanes
Runners up: Bahrain

West Asia Premiership
Winners: Bahrain
Runners up: UAE Premiership

UAE Premiership
}Winners: Dubai Exiles
Runners up: Dubai Hurricanes

UAE Division One
Winners: Abu Dhabi Saracens
Runners up: Dubai Hurricanes II

UAE Division Two
Winners: Barrelhouse
Runners up: RAK Rugby

Married Malala

Malala Yousafzai is enjoying married life, her father said.

The 24-year-old married Pakistan cricket executive Asser Malik last year in a small ceremony in the UK.

Ziauddin Yousafzai told The National his daughter was ‘very happy’ with her husband.

Top 10 most competitive economies

1. Singapore
2. Switzerland
3. Denmark
4. Ireland
5. Hong Kong
6. Sweden
7. UAE
8. Taiwan
9. Netherlands
10. Norway

The biog

Name: Abeer Al Bah

Born: 1972

Husband: Emirati lawyer Salem Bin Sahoo, since 1992

Children: Soud, born 1993, lawyer; Obaid, born 1994, deceased; four other boys and one girl, three months old

Education: BA in Elementary Education, worked for five years in a Dubai school

 

Dates for the diary

To mark Bodytree’s 10th anniversary, the coming season will be filled with celebratory activities:

  • September 21 Anyone interested in becoming a certified yoga instructor can sign up for a 250-hour course in Yoga Teacher Training with Jacquelene Sadek. It begins on September 21 and will take place over the course of six weekends.
  • October 18 to 21 International yoga instructor, Yogi Nora, will be visiting Bodytree and offering classes.
  • October 26 to November 4 International pilates instructor Courtney Miller will be on hand at the studio, offering classes.
  • November 9 Bodytree is hosting a party to celebrate turning 10, and everyone is invited. Expect a day full of free classes on the grounds of the studio.
  • December 11 Yogeswari, an advanced certified Jivamukti teacher, will be visiting the studio.
  • February 2, 2018 Bodytree will host its 4th annual yoga market.
Company profile

Name: WallyGPT
Started: 2014
Founders: Saeid and Sami Hejazi
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech
Investment raised: $7.1 million
Number of staff: 20
Investment stage: Pre-seed round