Dec 20 2018
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today made this statement on Egyptian courts acquitting 40 NGO workers who had been accused of operating non-governmental organizations (NGO) without the necessary approval.
In 2011, offices of numerous NGOs were ordered to close and the workers were sentenced to jail terms ranging from one to five years. The United States strongly opposed the original actions taken by the courts.
“I’m very pleased to hear the Egyptian courts have now acquitted employees of IRI, NDI, Freedom House, and other NGOs of criminal misconduct in Egypt. This is welcome news and a very big step in the right direction in repairing a fractured relationship between the United States and Egypt.
“The accusations have always been baseless. The members of these organizations have served their nation and the people of Egypt honorably in advance of democracy, the rule of law, and human rights - areas in which much work remains.
“I appreciate the assistance Egypt has provided in the fight against ISIS and their working relationship with our allies in Israel.
“I hope we will build on this decision by the Egyptian courts and regain momentum when it comes to the US-Egypt relationship which is strategically important to both the region and the world.”