Diplomatic tensions have been rising between Egypt and Sudan lately because of the Egyptian Ramadan drama, “Abu Omar Al Masry. " On Saturday, Sudan summoned the Egyptian ambassador in Khartoum to protest the series.
The series is currently being shown on several Arab satellite channels. Some have argued it conveys a negative image about Sudan and portrays the country as host to terrorists and a source of violence, according to a statement sent from the Sudanese Foreign Ministry to the Egyptian authorities.
The statement pointed out that the series creators’ claimed some parts of the series are taking place in Sudan using Sudanese license plates, which must be approached only after convening with authorities.
On the other hand, the Egyptian Supreme Council for Media Regulation (SCMR) dismissed allegations over offensive scenes in the series. He said the council will maintain the strong historic relations with Sudan.
The SCMR noted that the Egyptian series begins with a disclaimer that reads: “The story, all names, characters, and incidents portrayed in this production are fictitious. No identification with actual persons (living or deceased), places, buildings, and products is intended or should be inferred.”
Meanwhile, hashtag “مصر_تحارب_السودان_في_رمضان” (Egypt fights Sudan in Ramadan) became trending among Sudanese who expressed their discontent with the series.
Translation: “In Sudan, there are no attacks on mosques or bombings in churches. We never heard of an attack on a police station where officers were killed. Also we never saw our playgrounds empty of people.. Despite our poverty, we [Sudanese] are safe.. search for the terrorist.” [Pointing out to the terrorist attacks took place in Egypt during the last few years]
Translation: “Why does the Egyptian media always seek to distort Sudan's image?”
Some Sudanese users took it too far, by accusing Egypt of threatening their country’s national security and supporting terrorism:
Translation: “Egypt welcomes the Sudanese opposition. It is the only country that threatens the national security of Sudan. Egypt never wanted Sudan to gain stability and it provides financial support for terrorism in Libya, Sudan, Syria, Southern Sudan and it kills Gaza children. Egypt is a terrorist state.”
Other users decided to seize the opportunity to remind Egyptians of the disputed sovereignty of Halayeb and Shalateen area between the two countries.
Translation: “The Egyptian occupation of Sudan’s Halayeb is a historical injustice and betrayal of a strategic neighbour.”
Despite all, there were reasonable users who chose to soothe tensions between Egyptians and Sudanese.
Translation: “The main aim behind art is to spread love and peace, not raise tensions among nations. This series had sparked discord and it should be suspended.”
The first episode of the series revolves around an Egyptian lawyer played by actor, Ahmed Ezz, who seeks to save his own son from a terrorist group which leads him to hide and smuggle from Egypt into Sudan.
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