It’s the Mideast version of a sordid soap opera. A Lebanese pop star is brutally slain in her luxury Dubai apartment, her throat slashed. Arrested in her death: One of Egypt’s most politically connected businessmen, accused of paying $2 million to have her killed.
Lebanese singer Suzanne Tamim was found slain in her apartment in Dubai in July.
The killing of Suzanne Tamim has gone beyond a lurid crime story to something more serious — a glimpse into the close links between Egypt’s government and powerful business tycoons long viewed as above the law.
It is also exposing strains between societies like Egypt’s, where wealth and political power increasingly go hand in hand, and Dubai, which recently launched a high-profile push against corruption.
People in the Arab world have long followed with fascination and moral clucking the tales of businessmen and politicians cavorting with actresses, belly-dancers and singers — a sort of Hollywood Babylon in the conservative Muslim Middle East.
But even by those standards, the Tamim drama is a stunner. The 30-year-old singer, famed for her striking green eyes, was found dead in her Dubai apartment in July, with multiple stab wounds and a 20-centimeter (8 inch) slash across her throat.
This week, Egyptian authorities arrested real estate mogul Hisham Talaat Moustafa, said to be Tamim’s former lover.
For many, the surprise wasn’t Moustafa’s alleged involvement — but his arrest.
Image from Flickr.