Skip to main content

US Senator blocks $235 million in Egypt military aid over rights

A man, child, and woman ride a motorcycle across the street from an election campaign bus for Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi adorned with his image and slogan "Long Live Egypt"
— Washington (AFP)

The new top US senator on foreign relations on Tuesday blocked some $235 million in military aid to Egypt over human rights concerns, after his predecessor was indicted in a scandal that touched on ties with Cairo.

Ben Cardin, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said he told Secretary of State Antony Blinken that his hold on funds "will remain until specific human rights progress is made."

"I believe it is imperative that we continue to hold the government of Egypt, and all governments, accountable for their human rights violations," Cardin said in a statement.

He said he would withhold the assistance to Egypt if it "does not take concrete, meaningful and sustainable steps to improve the human rights conditions in the country."

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 for annual access.