First Published: 2009-11-17

 
Egypt urged to act to avoid repeat rockslide disaster
 

Amnesty International: government neglect could cause death of thousands of Egypt’s poor.

 

Middle East Online

'Egypt’s poor are trapped by poverty'

CAIRO - Egypt must take immediate action to ensure there is no repeat of a 2008 rockslide that killed more than 100 residents of a Cairo shantytown, Amnesty International warned in a report on Tuesday.

"Thousands of Egypt’s poor are trapped by poverty and neglect that could ultimately end in their deaths," said Malcolm Smart, the global rights group's Middle East and Africa director.

"The government must urgently address the risks faced by those living in areas designated as ‘unsafe’ and find solutions by consulting with those directly affected."

A cliff face collapsed on dozens of homes in Cairo's Manshiyet Nasser slum on September 6, 2008, killing at least around 100 residents and injuring dozens of others.

At the time, residents blamed the disaster on work that had been going on for several weeks on the Moqattam plateau overlooking the shantytown, and said the authorities had been warned of the dangers of just such a disaster.

In its report, Amnesty called on Egyptian authorities to "alleviate the threats to lives in the 26 'unsafe areas' in Greater Cairo, and to protect the residents’ rights to health and adequate housing."

"Denied an effective voice and largely ignored by those in power, many residents ... continue to live in fear on precarious hillsides or under high voltage power lines because they have nowhere else to go," it said.

Amnesty called on the authorities to properly investigate the incident and ensure such a tragedy is not repeated.

"The government must develop a comprehensive programme of action to address the risks faced by those living in ‘unsafe areas’ and to uphold their rights to life, health and adequate housing," said Smart.

 

Moroccans go to polls for local, regional elections

King Salman, President Obama gloss over differences

Washington 'monitoring' reports Russian military is in Syria

Drowned Syrian boy buried as Europe grapples with 'migrant' crisis

IS jihadists blow up tower tombs at Syria's Palmyra

UN stops aid to 229,000 Syrian refugees in Jordan

Bahrain says 5 soldiers killed in southern Saudi Arabia

2,200 Austrian drivers join campaign to pick up refugees in Budapest

More than 1,000 migrants walk their way to Austria

Hungary shuts main border crossing

22 UAE soldiers killed in Yemen

At least 30 migrants feared drowned off Libya

British PM mulls help for Syrian refugees

EU ministers to meet on escalating migrant crisis

Iran submits peace plan to Syria's Assad

Father of drowned Syrian boy tells story of fatal journey

US energy firm gets tough on stalled Israel gas deal

Iran objects to Kuwait linking it to 'terror cell'

Cameron won’t accept more refugees for now

Mideast wars cause 13 million school dropouts

Turkey arrests '4 traffickers' over migrant toddler's death

Egypt sentences dozens of alleged Islamists in mass trial

Netanyahu defiant after Obama secures Iran deal support

Family of drowned child repeatedly displaced in Syria

Erdogan lashes out at EU over Med 'migrant cemetery'

Britain to Cameron: Do more for refugees!

German asylum dream for Iraqis hard to fulfill

Iran’s Basij militia puts on show of strength in Tehran

Death toll in IS Yemen mosque attack rises to 32

UN urges Lebanon parliament to elect president

Syria, Yemen conflicts on Obama-King Salman talks

Suicide bombers hit Shiite mosque in Yemen capital: witnesses

Netanyahu threatens to shoot stone-throwers

David Petraeus: Use Al-Qaeda fighters to battle IS

White House wins enough Senate support for Iran deal

12 Syrian migrants die off Turkish coast

Car bomb kills 10 in Syria regime bastion Latakia

Saudi top cleric slams Iran prophet movie

Iran police to confiscate cars of 'poorly veiled' women

Libya's Tripoli authorities undecided on joining peace talks

Lebanon protesters escalate “You Stink” campaign

Turkey transfers British reporters to new jail

Two Yemeni Red Cross staff killed

Qatar to begin enforcing key labour reform law from November

Syria war takes its toll on heritage riches