Democratic freedom Egyptian style:
Egypt forces storm offices of pro-democracy, human rights groups accused of fomenting protests
By AL-Associated Press
CAIRO — Egyptian security forces stormed on Thursday the offices of 10 human rights and pro-democracy groups, including several based in the U.S., accused by the country’s military rulers of fomenting protests with the help of foreign funding.
The raids are part of a crackdown on activists who have grown increasingly critical of the ruling generals, who blame “foreign hands” for the unrest that continues to roil Egypt. This month, Justice Minister Adel Abdel-Hamid accused around 300 nonprofit civil society groups of receiving unauthorized foreign funding and using the money for protests.
Among the offices ransacked were the U.S.-headquartered National Democratic Institute, Freedom House and the International Republican Institute, which is observing Egypt’s staggered parliamentary elections.
The Obama administration demanded Egyptian authorities immediately halt the raids on non-governmental organizations (NGOs), saying the are “inconsistent” with long-standing U.S-Egypt cooperation. By far the largest recipient of foreign funding in Egypt is the military itself, which has for more than 30 years received about $1.3 billion in annual U.S. security assistance.