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  Words in the News
  The Cairo metro, which is being called a new wonder of the modern world, opened. Barbara Plett, the BBC’s Correspondent in Cairo, reported.
  Audio Listen to the report in full
Cairo traffic

22nd April 1999

The opening of the Cairo metro

NEWS 1   Everything about the Cairo metro system radiates national pride. All of the country's presidents have downtown stations named after them and pharaonic statues sit in glass cages on the immaculate air conditioned platforms. Even the two gigantic drilling machines that dug underneath the River Nile are named after ancient Egyptian queens, Hatshepsut and Nefertiti. The Cairo metro system is one of Egypt's most ambitious projects.

radiates national pride: reflects how proud Egyptians are of it

named after: are given the names of

pharaonic: pharaohs were kings of ancient Egypt

NEWS 2  

International contractors led by the French started tunnelling under this city of fifteen million in the early eighties to help relieve horrendous congestion. This latest extension is part of a second line. By the year 2005 Egypt hopes to have more than one hundred and fifty kilometres of track in both Cairo and the city of Alexandria carrying seven million passengers a day. The entire project is expected to cost more than seven billion dollars but without it surface traffic would become unmanageable. Officials say it's worth the expense. Some will even tell you they are modern day pharaohs building Egypt's fourth pyramid.


relieve horrendous congestion: get rid of the crowding caused by all the vehicles

is expected to cost: people believe it will cost

surface traffic: traffic above ground - on the roads

unmanageable: officials would not be able to control it

fourth pyramid: the pharaohs built the first three pyramids in Cairo - also a major feat of engineering

    Read about the background in BBC News Online

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