Egypt Working Group Letter Cited: “Time to Rethink U.S. Relationship With Egypt”

The New York Times editorial board cites the Working Group on Egypt March 23, 2016 letter to President Obama — signed by POMED Executive Director Stephen McInerney and Deputy Director for Research Amy Hawthorne — in an argument for reevaluating the U.S. relationship with Egypt.

Since the Egyptian military took power in a coup in the summer of 2013, the Obama administration’s policy toward Egypt has been moored in a series of faulty assumptions. The time has come to challenge them and to reassess whether an alliance that has long been considered a cornerstone of American national security policy is doing more harm than good.

Outraged by the escalating repression, leading American Middle East experts — including two who served in the Obama administration — this week urged President Obama to confront President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.

“If this crackdown is allowed to reach its conclusion, it will silence an indigenous human rights community that has survived more than 30 years of authoritarian rule, leaving few if any Egyptians free to investigate mounting abuses by the state,” they wrote in a letter to Mr. Obama. They decried the arbitrary imprisonment of tens of thousands of Egyptians and the use of torture and extrajudicial killings, including the recent murder of an Italian student, that are believed to have been carried out by state security agents.

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