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March 1, 2012
I’m pleased the court has lifted the travel ban and am looking forward to my son’s arrival in the US. I’d like to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers during this time.
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood • From a statement today, on the flight home for seven American pro-democracy workers who had been held in Egypt, barred from traveling over accusations of illegal fundraising. One of the seven is his son, Sam LaHood, a high-profile family connection that helped highlight the diplomatic turmoil that unfolded over the Americans’ detainment. The price of getting these folks back home? A cool $5 million in bail, paid by the U.S. to Egypt. This brings an end to a perilous diplomatic situation, though the U.S. doesn’t seem ready to bury the hatchet and forget about this just yet – Victoria Nuland, spokeswoman for the State Department, said no decision has yet been made on the state of U.S. aid to Egypt. source (viafollow)
15:08 // 2 years ago
February 8, 2012

Egypt/U.S. relations strained over detained American NGO workers

  • one As we’ve mentioned before, the Egyptian military government has barred 19 U.S. citizens from leaving the country. They worked for pro-democracy NGOs, and are being held on claim they took foreign money without official approval.
  • twoSenators John McCain, Kelly Ayotte and Joe Lieberman have warned of a potential “disastrous rupture” in U.S./Egypt relations. At risk is nearly $1.3 billion in military aid, which the U.S. has already threatened to halt. source

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14:41 // 2 years ago
January 26, 2012
It’s absolutely an escalation. To have a strategic U.S. ally issue bans against American citizens is deeply troubling.
Scott Mastic, Mid-East regional director of the International Republican Institute • Speaking on the state of affairs in Egypt, where American members of the IRI, a pro-democracy group, have been barred from traveling pending apparent investigation by the military government. This is, perhaps, the unpleasant flip-side of the coin in Egypt, after yesterday’s anniversary of the protests (along with many reports yesterday that women were in great personal danger as darkness fell on Tahrir Square). This story takes on a personal nature for one prominent member of the U.S. government — Sam LaHood, son of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, is the IRI’s director in Egypt, and has explicitly been forbidden to return home. “It’s gotten more serious,” he said. source (viafollow)
14:06 // 2 years ago