Egyptian Government May Prosecute Foreign Activists

By:  James Heiser
02/09/2012
       
Egyptian Government May Prosecute Foreign Activists

Egypt’s purportedly ‘transitional’ government — upheld throughout the past year as the example of the “Arab Spring” movement that was destined to bring Western-style democracy to the Muslim world — is proving its inability to live up to the hype. While many warning signs have been in evidence since the emergence of the anti-Mubarak revolution — including a dramatic increase in anti-Christian persecution — many such signs have received little attention in the American media. Now, however, with the Obama administration threatening to cut the $1.3 billion in military aid that the U.S. doles out annually to the Egyptian regime, that nation’s ‘democratic’ experiment is being examined once again.

 

Egypt’s purportedly ‘transitional’ government — upheld throughout the past year as the example of the “Arab Spring” movement that was destined to bring Western-style democracy to the Muslim world — is proving its inability to live up to the hype. While many warning signs have been in evidence since the emergence of the anti-Mubarak revolution — including a dramatic increase in anti-Christian persecution — many such signs have received little attention in the American media. Now, however, with the Obama administration threatening to cut the $1.3 billion in military aid that the U.S. doles out annually to the Egyptian regime, that nation’s ‘democratic’ experiment is being examined once again.

The focus of ire from the Obama administration is the decision by Egyptian authorities to subject 40 foreign and Egyptian activists to criminal prosecution and bans on travel. The offense allegedly committed by the activists — including 19 Americans — is that they received foreign funding for their activities in Egypt. As explained in an article for Reuters (“NGO worker cases sent to Egypt court in funding row”), the Egyptian regime is concerned that such activists for various non-governmental organizations (NGOs) were receiving foreign financial support without the awareness of the government:

Egyptian officials say the crackdown is part of an investigation into foreign funding of NGOs. For the authorities, it is a matter of law; the non-governmental organizations broke it by receiving foreign funding without government approval.

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