Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Egypt names 43 targeted in democracy groups inquiry

Reporting from WashingtonEgyptian state media Monday published the names of 43 people accused in a politically explosive investigation of pro-democracy groups, saying they are suspected of receiving illegal funding with the aim of destabilizing the country's national security.

The 19 Americans on the list of those to be prosecuted on charges of violating foreign funding laws included Sam LaHood, son of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and country director for the Washington-based International Republican Institute, and Charles Dunne, the Mideast program director for Freedom House, a research and advocacy organization.

Dunne said in an interview Monday that he last visited Egypt in October.

"I left the country in October, in their good graces," Dunne said. "But apparently not now."

Egyptian officials consider foreign funding of the groups as interference in their country's political system. The nongovernmental groups insist that they aim only to provide Egyptians with nuts-and-bolts technical assistance to help them take part in the democratic process. Read More...


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