On Friday, US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton waived legislative conditions related to Egypt's democratic transition, on the basis of America's national security interests, allowing for the continued flow of Foreign Military Financing to Egypt. She took the decision after certifying to Congress that Egypt is meeting its obligations under its Peace Treaty with Israel.
These decisions reflect America's goal to maintain strategic partnership with an Egypt made stronger and more stable by a successful transition to democracy, State Department Spokesperson Victoria Nuland said.
Egypt has made significant progress toward democracy in the last 15 months, including: free and fair parliamentary elections and the transfer of legislative authority to the new People's Assembly, and a date announced for complete transition to civilian leadership.
But she noted that Egypt's transition to democracy is not yet complete, and more work remains to protect universal rights and freedoms, as the Egyptian people themselves have made clear to their own leaders.
The Secretary's decision to waive is also designed to demonstrate our strong support for Egypt's enduring role as a security partner and leader in promoting regional stability and peace, Nuland said. Egypt has maintained thirty-plus years of peace with Israel. It contributes to efforts to stop proliferation and arms smuggling and facilitates missions from Afghanistan to counter-terrorism in the Horn of Africa.
Washington expressed deep concern regarding the trials of civil society activists—non-Egyptians and Egyptians alike—and urged to end the harassment.
The State Department said the political transition underway is bringing about a new, more democratic Egypt, and pledged to consult closely with the Congress about these issues.
by RTT Staff Writer
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