Egypt play on 2011 revolution back on after censor okay

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An Egyptian theater group said a play it had cancelled after state censors demanded scenes be removed would go ahead after authorities reconsidered their stance. “Before the Revolution”, by playwright and independent theater director Ahmed El Attar, was meant to open this week at the Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival (D-CAF) but was cancelled on Sunday after censors demanded five scenes be removed.

However, the festival’s website said late Monday that permission had finally been granted to hold the play starting on Tuesday “without the disruption of its dramatic construction.” The play depicts events in Egypt in the run-up to the 2011 uprising that ousted veteran president Hosni Mubarak.

The controversy came days before the March 26-28 presidential election. President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi who is regularly accused of cracking down on dissent is expected to win a second term after a succession of would-be candidates were abruptly sidelined, leaving only one other person in the race.

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