Egypt will beat Algeria, even on the planet Mars
Cairo (Egypte)- One could not visit Egypt without having the idea of meeting or interviewing one of the figures in the media world that has succeeded to have a large audience in Algeria, whether positive or negative.
- Medhat Chalabi, a name now associated with the weekly TV program on "Modern" channel, which has raised the ire of the Algerian people and football fans in particular, after the media attacks against our martyrs.
In this long interview in his office in the Egyptian Football Federation, he tried to lift the veil to inform the public of Algeria and prove he did not insult the Algerians, or rather, he claimed, he did not intend to prejudice the Martyrs of the Algerian revolution.
It was also an opportunity for us to hear about the long awaited match between Algeria and Egypt scheduled on 14 November.
• First of all, did you know that you irritate the Algerian public whenever you appear on the Egyptian channel "Dream"?
Of course yes, I follow the events and the Algerian media very closely and I think that Ennahar is one of the newspapers who are angry against me (laughs).
• Not at all. Everyone is free to express his remarks and comments, provided they he does not exceed the limits.
That's what I meant. It is my right as a citizen of Egypt, before being a journalist to support the selection of my country. Just like you Algerians. There must be mutual respect. Imagine if I told you that I wish that Algeria goes to the World Cup on the account of Egypt, you certainly will not believe me.
• OK. But during a TV program that you presented, there have been overruns and a direct attack on symbols of the Algerian revolution; our martyrs, something that has aroused great resentment among the Algerians and at all levels.
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to clarify some important things. I would like to inform everyone that there was a misunderstanding. I never wanted to harm anyone, especially not the Algerian people, our brothers.
• Please do ...
After the meeting of Blida, I invited the reporter “Fethi Send” and we conducted an analysis of the match and the causes of that heavy defeat in front of your national team by three goals. During our discussions, I said "the land of a million martyrs." He replied that the actual number was one and half million. And he said "Maybe the number has increased with the rising price of potatoes. He would not harm the Algerian people. I would add, and I swear three times that we studied in history books that Algeria was the country of A Million Shahid (Martyrs). Ask any Egyptian, he will tell you “a million martyrs.” So the problem is in the history books that have misled the history of the Algerian revolution. We, in Egypt, we respect the great sacrifices of our brothers, the Algerian people, then how can we humiliate you?
• But then you returned to irritate the public with your story of dance after the game.
But where is the harm in that? O My Algerian brothers, I am Egyptian and it is my right to dance if the team of my country qualifies to the World Cup. I do not think that dance in downtown Cairo is an insult to the Algerian people. I think the Algerian people as well have the right to express their joy and dance in the centre of Algiers or anywhere in Algeria if their team qualifies.
• Who do you think is responsible for this media war between Algeria and Egypt?
Sincerity, it is the media of both countries who are responsible. The disputes over the Net between Egyptian and Algerian youth, but also what happens on satellite channels who are also responsible not to mention an important point that has helped create this tension between the two selections like the declaration of Saifi, who said he will come to Cairo for sightseeing. This led to resentment of the Egyptian street, despite his recent statement in which he denied everything.
• What do you think of the serious provocations from your colleagues Amro Adib and Mustapha Abdou?
First, I must say that I have not seen their show, but I read that Amro Adib had angered the Algerian people, I do not know what he had said, but I personally condemn any statement that would insult even if they come from a compatriot. It is unacceptable that this kind of thing happens between brothers. It's a football match and it is everyone's right to express his joy and to celebrate, but within the limits of reasonableness, as I do myself (laughs), but without hurting anyone. This leads me to enlighten public opinion on this matter in which I am accused of having infringed the Algerian people and the Martyrs of Algeria, which didn’t happen.
To be continued ...
Ennahar / interview with Yassine A.