Egyptians stand firm on latest row with US
CAIRO - Reuters
US Defense Secretary Robert Gates meets with Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi in this photo. An Egyptian military delegation canceled its meetings with US lawmakers. AP photoAn Egyptian military delegation abruptly cancelled its meetings with U.S. lawmakers to return to Cairo on Feb. 6 after warnings from both Congress and the White House that Egypt’s crackdown on non-governmental groups could threaten its $1.3 billion in annual U.S. military aid.
A spokesman for the Egyptian Embassy confirmed that the delegation had cancelled its meetings this week with U.S. lawmakers, but gave no reason.
Nineteen Americans are among 40 foreign and Egyptian activists whose cases have been brought to criminal court by Egypt’s army-backed government. A number of the U.S. citizens involved have sought refuge in the American Embassy. The Egyptian delegation had been scheduled to see Senators Carl Levin and John McCain, the Democratic chairman and ranking Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee this week.
Senate aides said they did not know why the meetings were cancelled. The White House said earlier Feb. 6 that the Egyptian crackdown on pro-democracy non-governmental groups could threaten the country’s $1.3 billion in annual U.S. military aid.