U.S. Says Egypt Will Halt NGO Raids

December 31, 2011
U.S. officials say Egyptian authorities have agreed to halt raids against non-governmental pro-democracy groups.
Officials said Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and U.S. Ambassador to Egypt Anne Patterson spoke December 30 with senior Egyptian officials to stress Washington's concern about the raids on the organizations, which include three groups funded by the United States.
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said Egyptian authorities told Patterson that the raids would stop, and that seized property would be returned to the groups.
The Pentagon said Defense Secretary Panetta had spoken about the issue in a telephone call to the head of Egypt's ruling military council, Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi.
On December 29, Egyptian police raided a number of non-governmental organizations, including the U.S.-funded National Democratic Institute, the International Republican Institute and Freedom House.
Egypt’s government receives more than $1 billion in aid annually from the U.S.
compiled from agency reports