US lawmakers urge for action against Egypt’s crackdown
US lawmakers urge US gov’t to pressure Egypt on arrests: US lawmakers have sent a letter (pdf) to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urging for serious action to be taken against arrests of activists in Egypt, which they say negatively affects relations between the two countries. More than 30 lawmakers pointed to the alleged targeting of US and other foreign NGOs, saying that at least 15 US citizens have been detained by Egyptian authorities without legal basis. “We are worried that the Egyptian government’s approach to human rights, in addition to repressing Egyptian freedoms and contravening American values, will have an unintended but harmful impact on Egypt’s stability, the very thing the Egyptian government is seeking to protect,” the lawmakers said. The letter also accused Egypt of a media crackdown.
The US press is taking the cue, with some noting that photojournalist Mahmoud Abou Zeid, known as Shawkan, has yet to be released despite an order releasing him from prison being issued three months ago.