Not unlike the many Ramadan mosalsalat that Cairenes are hooked to this month, the latest episode of the ongoing drama that is Egyptian politics has taken a dramatic twist.
After it was announced in April that Egypt would be handing over the two Red Sea islands of Tiran and Sanafir to Saudi Arabia, an Egyptian judge at Egypt’s State Council has overruled the decision, stating that the islands will “remain under Egyptian sovereignty,” after a lawsuit was filed by lawyer, Khaled Ali.
The decision is by no means a final one, though; the verdict has to be approved by Egypt’s High Administrative Court before it can become legally binding.
The decision to hand over the islands, which was announce during a visit by Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, drew criticism from across the country and even led to pockets of protests.
Why are Tiran and Sanafir Important?
Sitting 4km apart, it’s the location of the islands that make them significant. Positioned at the mouth of the Gulf of Aqaba, the stretch of water that it is located on is used by Israel to access the Red Sea and has even been captured by Israel on two separate occasions in 1956 and 1982.
Considered a strategically important area, the Saudi’s ‘let’ Egypt guard the islands in 1950, which have only been inhabited by Egyptian troops and international peacekeepers.
Stay tuned for more on this twisty windy soap opera of a tale…
By Kalam El Qahaira