When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Already a subscriber? Log in .

You've reached your limit of one free article.

Get unlimited access to Worldcrunch

You can cancel anytime .


Exclusive International news coverage

Ad-free experience NEW

Weekly digital Magazine NEW

9 daily & weekly Newsletters

Access to Worldcrunch archives

Free trial

30-days free access, then $2.90
per month.

Annual Access BEST VALUE

$19.90 per year, save $14.90 compared to monthly billing.save $14.90.

Subscribe to Worldcrunch

Egypt's IMF Loan Opposed By Both Socialists And Islamists



Egypt's Salafi Nour Party has slammed the government's negotiations with the International Monetary Fund about a $4.8 billion rescue package, stating any potential loan that the government receives would be against sharia law.

Younis Makhyoun, a member of the ultra-conservative Islamist party said: "Borrowing from abroad is usury ... God will never bless a country based on usury."

Makhyoun added he would rather see the government reduce spending, apply an austerity policy, set a maximum wage and apply Islamic regulations to stock exchange speculations, reported the Egypt Independent.

Debate about IMF loan is representative of why Egypt's economy suffered for 60 yrs. Wealth begets national pride not the other way around.

— salamamoussa (@salamamoussa) August 23, 2012

Egyptian Prime Minister Hesham Qandil announced Wednesday that the Egyptian government has requested a $4.8 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Egypt requested a loan of $3.2 billion in May; however, negotiations were stalled by Salafi ministers in the now-dissolved, transitional parliament.

The IMF's Managing Director Christine Lagarde met with President Morsi and Prime Minister Qandil in Cairo on Wednesday, as part of continuing negotiations to help revive the country's ailing economy after the popular uprising in 2011.

The IMF stands ready to support Egypt's economic recovery. See my press statement bit.ly/TUtATw

— Christine Lagarde (@Lagarde) August 22, 2012

Al Jazeera reported Lagarde as saying: "I took note of their strategy and ambition for Egypt's economic and social future, and I assured them of our continued commitment to support Egypt and its people during this historic period of transition."

Dozens of socialist and leftist protestors were also opposing Christine Lagarde's visit to the Cabinet on Wednesday.

Mary Daniel, the protest's organizer, told al-Ahram: "Why did we have a revolution? Wasn't it to improve the living conditions of the people? We know that the money from these loans is pilfered by the authorities and will only lead to the further impoverishment of the people."

BBC News reported that Egypt currently has an internal debt of $193 billion and a foreign debt of $33.8 billion.

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.


How Brazil's Evangelical Surge Threatens Survival Of Native Afro-Brazilian Faith

Followers of the Afro-Brazilian Umbanda religion in four traditional communities in the country’s northeast are resisting pressure to convert to evangelical Christianity.

image of Abel José, an Umbanda priest

Abel José, an Umbanda priest

Agencia Publica
Géssica Amorim

Among a host of images of saints and Afro-Brazilian divinities known as orixás, Abel José, 42, an Umbanda priest, lights some candles, picks up his protective beads and adjusts the straw hat that sits atop his head. He is preparing to treat four people from neighboring villages who have come to his house in search of spiritual help and treatment for health ailments.

The meeting takes place discreetly, in a small room that has been built in the back of the garage of his house. Abel lives in the quilombo of Sítio Bredos, home to 135 families. The community, located in the municipality of Betânia of Brazil’s northeastern state of Pernambuco, is one of the municipality’s four remaining communities that have been certified as quilombos, the word used to refer to communities formed in the colonial era by enslaved Africans and/or their descendents.

In these villages there are almost no residents who still follow traditional Afro-Brazilian religions. Abel, Seu Joaquim Firmo and Dona Maura Maria da Silva are the sole remaining followers of Umbanda in the communities in which they live. A wave of evangelical missionary activity has taken hold of Betânia’s quilombos ever since the first evangelical church belonging to the Assembleia de Deus group was built in the quilombo of Bredos around 20 years ago. Since then, other evangelical, pentecostal, and neo-pentecostal churches and congregations have established themselves in the area. Today there are now nine temples spread among the four communities, home to roughly 900 families.

The temples belong to the Assembleia de Deus, the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and the World Church of God's Power, the latter of which has over 6,000 temples spread across Brazil and was founded by the apostle and televangelist Valdemiro Santiago, who became infamous during the pandemic for trying to sell beans that he had blessed as a Covid-19 cure. Assembleia de Deus alone, who are the largest pentecostal denomination in the world, have built five churches in Betânia’s quilombos.

Keep reading...Show less

The latest