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Washington loosens Egypt arms embargo

While the Obama administration has allowed US helicopters to be shipped to Egypt, the question of Egypt’s democratic transition will frustrate deeper ties.
Apache helicopters fly over Tahrir Square during a protest to support the army, in Cairo July 26, 2013. Ousted Egyptian president Mohamed Mursi is under investigation for an array of charges including murder, the state news agency said on Friday, stoking tensions as opposing political camps took to the streets. Confirming the potential for bloodshed, two men were killed in confrontations in Egypt's second city Alexandria and a further 19 were hurt, Mena news agency reported. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh (EGYP

Washington is slowly and tentatively scaling back its embargo on the supply of big-ticket military hardware to the new regime in Cairo. The restrictions were imposed after the July 2013 ouster of President Mohammed Morsi by a military committee led by Field Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

The US ban was meant to punish Egypt for deposing the elected Egyptian government and its bloody suppression of pro-Morsi supporters in the aftermath of the coup. Its actions were in large part dictated by US legislation requiring Washington to sanction Egypt for its crackdown on dissent and short-circuiting of the democratic process.

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