Egypt arrests Briton on suspicion of spying: family

A 19-year-old British man has been arrested in Egypt on suspicion of spying. (AFP)
Updated 30 November 2018

Egypt arrests Briton on suspicion of spying: family

  • Muhammad Abul-Kasem, 19, was detained in the northern port city of Alexandria on his arrival from Libya on November 21
  • Abul-Kasem’s family said he was detained after the authorities found a photograph of a military aircraft on his mobile phone

LONDON: A 19-year-old British man has been arrested in Egypt on suspicion of spying, his family told the BBC on Friday.
Muhammad Abul-Kasem, 19, was detained in the northern port city of Alexandria on his arrival from Libya on November 21, the report said.
The British Foreign Office said it was “seeking more information from the Egyptian authorities following the arrest of a British person in Alexandria, as well as permission for consular access.”
The statement made no reference to the spying allegations.
Abul-Kasem’s family said he was detained after the authorities found a photograph of a military aircraft on his mobile phone.
The family explained that Abul-Kasem took the picture from his plane’s window as it came in to land in Alexandria.
The report comes on the heels of a row between Britain and the United Arab Emirates over the life sentence the Gulf state handed British academic Matthew Hedges last week.
Hedges was pardoned and allowed to return to his family on Tuesday following strong diplomatic pressure from London.


Iran breaks its record for most new coronavirus cases in one day

Updated 20 October 2020

Iran breaks its record for most new coronavirus cases in one day

  • Iran, which emerged early on as an epicenter of the virus, has seen its worst wave of deaths from the illness in recent weeks
TEHRAN: Iran on Tuesday reported its highest single-day toll of new coronavirus cases since the start of the pandemic with more than 5,000 new infections, as the country struggles to cope with a surge in transmission.
Iran’s health ministry also reported that 322 people had died from the virus, pushing the death toll over 31,000. The new infection count on Tuesday eclipsed the previous high of 4,830 last week, shining a light on the nation’s floundering efforts to combat the virus.
Iran, which emerged early on as an epicenter of the virus, has seen its worst wave of deaths from the illness in recent weeks. Monday’s death toll shattered its previous single-day record, prompting state news outlets to declare it a “black day.”
Hospitals in the hard-hit capital of Tehran are overflowing. Last week, health officials announced that the city had run out of intensive care beds for virus patients.
The increase comes after Iranians packed cafes and restaurants at vacation spots during recent national holidays, and after schools reopened for in-person instruction last month.
The government has resisted a total lockdown because it does not want to further weaken an economy already devastated by unprecedented US sanctions. The Trump administration re-imposed economic sanctions on Iran after withdrawing in 2018 from Tehran’s nuclear accord with world powers.
With the death toll skyrocketing, authorities are now starting to impose more restrictions. The government closed museums, libraries, beauty salons, schools and universities in Tehran earlier this month, and imposed a mask mandate outdoors.