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Egypt security forces raid art gallery, theater in lead-up to Jan. 25 anniversary

The recent closure of a number of cultural and youth oriented establishments in Egypt came just weeks before the January 25 Revolution anniversary, with the concerned ministries exchanging accusations of being behind the raids and closures.
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CAIRO — A joint 20-member team composed of agents from the Censorship Authority, the Taxation Authority, National Security Agency and the Ministry of Manpower raided Townhouse Gallery and Rawabet Theater in Cairo on Dec. 28.

As relayed to Al-Monitor by one Townhouse employee who spoke on condition of anonymity, seven individuals in civilian clothes who identified themselves as Censorship Authority agents searched the hall and offices, including personal computers, and asked to see the IDs, official documents and licenses of employees and the gallery, without producing a search warrant. Scores of public officials from various entities flocked to the gallery to continue searching the premises and question employees for approximately three hours, prior to allowing them to leave after making copies of their IDs and confiscating a number of exhibits.

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