UAE reports 3 COVID-19 deaths, 995 new cases, a jump from previous days

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Dubai Economy said it issued 10 fines and 11 warnings to commercial establishments for not adhering to anti-COVID-19 measures. (File/Reuters)
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Updated 30 September 2020

UAE reports 3 COVID-19 deaths, 995 new cases, a jump from previous days

  • Dubai Economy issued 10 fines, 11 warning to businesses
  • Kuwait records 587 cases and 2 deaths, Oman reports 528 cases and 11 deaths

DUBAI: The UAE on Tuesday reported three deaths from COVID-19, a slight jump from the previous days, bringing the death toll to 416.
The Ministry of Health and Prevention said 995 new confirmed cases were reported, bringing the total number of infected cases since the pandemic began to 93,095, while the total deaths reached 413.
The ministry also said 1,076 cases recovered from coronavirus over the previous 24 hours, bringing the total to 82,538 cases.
Dubai Health Authority said it launched three new COVID-19 testing centers around the city, increasing the number of centers to five.

The centers will operate seven days a week, starting from 11am to 6pm, with a capacity of 550 examinations per day for each center.
The National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA) said between Sept. 1-15, 24,894 violations were detected in different regions of the UAE, and the most common violation was not wearing face masks, followed by violations regarding the number of passengers permitted per vehicle.
NCEMA said the 81 percent of the violations were made by Asian nationals and 19 percent were made by Arabs, with the highest violations detected in Dubai, followed by Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ajman, Fujairah, Umm Al-Quwain and finally Ras Al-Khaimah.
NCEMA also announced the return of sporting activities in the country with specific procedures and controls to prevent the spread of the virus.
“Protocols and guidelines have been developed to ensure a safe return to sporting activities based on studies, data and best global practices all under the supervision of medical teams with focal points managed by sport federations,” it said.
Dubai Police arrested two employees at one of the testing centers for allegedly “exploiting their positions” and for accepting bribes to falsify COVID-19 test results.
NCEMA said in a statement that they allegedly used images of negative examination samples previously preserved in the database belonging to other uninfected persons, in order to be able to enter Abu Dhabi.
The health ministry approved on Tuesday the provision of the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine to employees working on the front lines at Sharjah International Airport in cooperation with the government of Sharjah, “as they are exposed due to the nature of their work.”

Meanwhile, Dubai Economy said it issued fines to 10 commercial establishments and gave warnings to 11 shops for not adhering to anti-COVID-19 measures, while 643 businesses were found to be compliant.
These included shops in a number of shopping centers around Dubai, as well as four gyms that were fined in cooperation with Dubai Sports Council.
Elsewhere, Kuwait reported 587 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total to 104,568, while the death toll reached 607 after two new deaths were registered.

Oman recorded 528 new COVID-19 cases and 11 deaths, bringing total numbers to 98,585 and 935 respectively.

In Bahrain, one death was reported, taking the death toll to 246, with 574 new confirmed cases.

Egyptian festival celebrates Aragouz traditions

Updated 25 November 2020

Egyptian festival celebrates Aragouz traditions

  • The festival this year sheds light on the creative icons that inspired the aragouz

CAIRO: The second Egyptian Aragouz Festival has opened on Nov. 24, at the ancient Bayt Al-Sinnari, in Cairo. The aragouz is a traditional puppet figure dressed in red invented by Egyptians to ridicule situations comically.

Khaled Bahgat, a professor of theater at Helwan University and the founder of the festival and the Wamda Troupe for Aragouz and Shadow Puppets, said the festival is part of the initiative to preserve the Egyptian aragouz, after it was recognized by UNESCO in 2018 as one of the most important Egyptian artistic elements. He said that he wants the Egyptian art of aragouz to reach the world because it is an ancient Egyptian art.

The festival this year sheds light on the creative icons that inspired the aragouz.

The festival opened with a tribute to the great Egyptian creator Abu Al-Saud Al-Abyari in a reading of his story “Aragouz, Author and Idea,” which he published in 1953. Al-Aragouz was an important source of creativity for Al-Abyari.

The reading was followed by entries exploring how the art of aragouz shaped Egyptian comedy in the twentieth century.

The day closed with puppet performances of “The social media aragouz,” which reflected the impact of social media, directed by Ali Abu Zeid, and “The aragouz in the city,” directed by Nabil Bahgat.

On the second day, Reem Heggab will honor her father the late Egyptian poet Said Heggab, reciting one of his poems on the aragouz. This will be followed by two aragouz shows, “The Take Away,” directed by Mahmoud Sayed Hanafi, and “Aragouz, the Land of Myths.”

On Thursday, the theater department of the University of Alexandria will celebrate the aragouz with a lecture by Hany Abou El-Hassan, the head of the department, a workshop and a performance titled “Lorca and the aragouz,” directed by Nabil Bahgat and presented by the Wamda Troupe.

The performance honors the creativity of the Spanish poet and innovator Federico García Lorca, and will be held in the presence of the Spanish cultural attache.

The fourth day of the festival will honor the poet Fouad Haddad, whose son Amin Haddad will recite several poems from his father’s book of poetry entitiled Al-Aragouz. The poetry reading will be followed by a discussion.

Then there will be performances of “Aragouz Al Sima,” directed by Mustafa Al-Sabbagh, and “Al-Aragouz in Danger,” which deals with the greatest challenges facing the art of aragouz.

On the last day, the Faculty of Arts at Helwan University and the Department of Theater Sciences’ troupe will hold an open seminar with the department’s students to discuss ways to preserve the Egyptian aragouz.