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Censorship

Censorship of film 'Halawet Rooh' in Egypt sparks national controversy

Controversy is mounting over film censorship in Egypt where the military-backed government has pulled steamy pic “Halawet Rooh,” Arabic for “Sweetness of Spirit,” from movie theatres, overruling the head of the country’s censorship board who resigned in protest sparking outrage.Ironically the spat comes just after Darren Aronofsky’s “Noah” got the green light to be released in Egypt even though its banned in the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrein. That had caused Egyptian freedom of expression advocates to cheer.The decision by interim prime minister Ibrahim Mahlab to unilaterally yank “Sweetness,” which stars Lebanese bombshell Haifa Wehbe, prompted Ahmed Awad, undersecretary to the culture minister and head of the censorship authority, to immediately resign. The censorship board is supposed to be an independent body with final say on whether a movie can be seen by Egyptian auds.Directed by Sameh Abdel Aziz, “Sweetness” is reportedly loosely based on Italo helmer Giuseppe Tornato...

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