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Uighur students in limbo after crackdown in Egypt

Many are wondering what is behind Egyptian authorities' arrest of Chinese Uighurs studying at Al-Azhar.
Indonesian Muslim students read from the Koran, Islam's holy book at Al-Azhar mosque in the old city of Cairo on December 4, 2011. Al-Azhar mosque, which was developed into one of the oldest Islamic universities, pays special attention to the Koranic sciences and traditions of the Islamic prophet Mohammed and all the modern fields of science. AFP PHOTO/MAHMUD HAMS        (Photo credit should read MAHMUD HAMS/AFP/Getty Images)
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CAIRO — Mehmet Nur has been hiding out, spending time in mosques, living at friends’ houses and avoiding police at all costs since Egyptian authorities began a crackdown on Uighur residents, arresting scores of them in July.

“I am waiting to see what will happen to the detained students,” Nur, a Uighur student at Al-Azhar University, told Al-Monitor after requesting a pseudonym for security reasons. “Will they be released and allowed to move on with their studies, or will they be deported? I have to wait to see if I can enroll in university next semester.”

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