News

    Clinton Clears $1.3 Billion in Aid to Egypt

    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (file photo)
    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (file photo)

    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has signed off on the release of $1.3 billion in annual military aid to Egypt, despite concerns that the country's new leaders are not making sufficient democratic reforms. 

    Secretary Clinton cleared delivery of the assistance by certifying to U.S. lawmakers that Egypt is meeting its obligations under its peace treaty with Israel and has made “significant progress” toward democracy in the last 15 months.  That includes free and fair parliamentary elections and the transfer of legislative authority to that new assembly.

    In December, Congress passed a law requiring that Egypt's military rulers support the transition to a civilian government, hold free and fair elections and protect freedom of religion and association before the release of U.S. military aid.

    State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland says Secretary Clinton waived legislative conditions relating to the democratic transition on the basis of U.S. national security interests and the goal of maintaining the strategic partnership with Egypt.

    "What we are looking to do here is to continue to work with Egyptian partners on the kind of future that they want for Egypt and that is in our mutual interest,” she said.

    Some U.S. lawmakers and human rights groups are expressing disappointment with the decision. They say Egypt's transitional military leaders have not demonstrated they are committed to making full democratic reforms.

    The Washington-based civil society group Freedom House says the move undermines U.S. support for Egyptian democracy. It says Egypt's military rulers have “repeatedly failed to uphold the fundamental rights of Egyptian citizens.”

    Freedom House was one of three U.S. pro-democracy groups shut down in Cairo in December during an Egyptian investigation into illegal foreign funding.

    Nuland says a new Egypt is emerging but there is clearly still much work to do.

    "There is more to do on the electoral side," said the spokeswoman. "There is more to do on the human rights side.  There is more to do on the civil society side.  And we make absolutely clear here that we remain deeply concerned regarding the trials of civil society activists - Egyptian and international - and we have raised these concerns and we are going to continue to do so.”

    If the situation in Egypt deteriorates, Nuland says Secretary Clinton can always re-evaluate her decision to grant the aid waiver.

     

    Join the conversation on our social journalism site -
    Middle East Voices
    . Follow our Middle East reports on
    Twitter and discuss them on our Facebook page.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Interesting Times
    March 24, 2012 2:55 PM
    Thank you for updating this peice to at least name the elites who are deciding to ignore LAWS passed by Congress and the will of the American people by giving 1.3 billion of OUR money to a country that HATES us. And why not name them? They have nothing to fear. Nothing will be done. Congress will roll over and open 'the purse' and the sheeple will continue to sleep while our democracy is taken away.

    by: NVO
    March 24, 2012 9:59 AM
    Clinton is a New World Order Drone, pushing for a One World Government under the New World Order. Her affiliation with the Bilderbergs, the Rockefellers, The Club Of Rome, The Trilateral Commission, The EU, totally negates her stance on Israel. She is anti-Israel, plain and simple.

    by: Informer
    March 23, 2012 11:17 AM
    Why is the US funding the successive repressive regimes in Egypt while the latter has oil and have been against US interests for long?

    by: InterestingTimes
    March 23, 2012 10:15 AM
    "Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will announce Friday that Washington has decided" OMG America! "Washington"! Really! I want a name at the very least when "Washington" decides to ignore a LAW. When did VOA become infiltrated by the left? This is sophomoric fluff.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenyai
    X
    February 08, 2016 4:30 PM
    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video New Hampshire Voters Are Independent, Mindful of History

    Once every four years, the northeastern state of New Hampshire becomes the center of the U.S. political universe with its first-in-the-nation presidential primary. What's unusual about New Hampshire is how seriously the voters take their role and the responsibility of being among the first to weigh in on the candidates.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Bhutanese Refugees in New Hampshire Closely Watching Primary Election

    They fled their country and lived in refugee camps in neighboring Nepal for decades before being resettled in the northeastern U.S. state of New Hampshire -- now the focus of the U.S. presidential contest. VOA correspondent Aru Pande spoke with members of the Bhutanese community, including new American citizens, about the campaign and the strong anti-immigrant rhetoric of some of the candidates.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video Sanders, Clinton Battle for Young Democratic Vote

    Despite a narrow loss to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in last week's Iowa Democratic caucuses, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders secured more than 80 percent of the vote among those between the ages of 18 and 29. VOA correspondent Aru Pande talks to Democrats in New Hampshire about who they are leaning towards and why in this week's primary.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.