For Immediate Release: March 22, 2012
Washington, DC – Human Rights First believes that the apparent decision by Secretary Clinton to wave the human rights and democracy conditions on U.S.military assistance to Egypt is a mistake.
“This decision will send a negative message to Egyptian military regime that the United States does not consider democratic transition a top priority in Egypt,” said Human Rights First’s Neil Hicks. “This is directly against the long-term interest of the United States as well as the Egyptian people who so bravely overthrew their autocratic ruler in February 2011. This decision will undermine the United States’ credibility as an advocate for human rights and democracy in the Middle East and around the world for years to come. ”
Human Rights First had recommended that the Administration release aid gradually based on Egypt meeting certain benchmarks on human rights and democratic transition. The organization urges the Administration to consider withholding further aid until progress is made, an approach supported by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT).