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Head of Cultural Palaces body faces criticism

While many working in the theatre field criticize shutting down the newspaper Masrahna, the head of the General Organisation of Cultural Palaces believes its a remnant of the old ousted regime

Ahram Online, Wednesday 15 Jun 2011

A statement was released by several people working in the theatre field against the discontinuation of Masrahna (Our Theatre), a newspaper specialized in theatre practices in Egypt and abroad.

The statement, signed by around 50 playwrights, theatre directors, actors and critics, was issued to the current culture minister Emad Abou-Ghazi, calling for him to intervene in what they described as a farce. The statement criticized the actions by Saad Abdel Rahman, the head of the General Organisation of Cultural Palaces (GOCP), and cited the move to shut down the newspaper as an aggressive stance against culture and enlightment.

They also criticized his statements in an interview that appeared on Al-Ahram Gate on 3 June, in which implied that all current theatre activities are a failure and that many in the field refuse change.

He had also stated in the interview that most cultural venues owned by the ministry are in poor condition, and considered the newspaper Masrahna as a project by the old ousted regime, adding that publishing of the paper was reliant on some "big names" that must be displaced.

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