US aid cut doesn't affect Egypt's Sinai offensive, officials say

Washington officials say US still working to assist Egyptian military in its counterterrorism operations.

By JERUSALEM POST CORRESPONDENT
October 30, 2013 23:14
Egyptian troops en route to Sinai

Egyptian troops en route to Sinai 370. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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WASHINGTON – Efforts by the Egyptian government to crack down on Islamist groups in Sinai have not been affected by America’s suspension of major military equipment, US officials said this week.

Obama administration officials testified before a hostile bipartisan group of lawmakers that the offensive continued unabated, and that the US was working to assist the Egyptian military as usual in its counterterrorism operations.

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After a months-long review, the White House announced that it would suspend the delivery of American-made tanks, fighter jets, attack helicopters and offensive missiles after a series of deadly crackdowns by the Egyptian army against civilian protestors.

The US also suspended $260 million in cash assistance to the interim government, which has been in power since the overthrow of president Mohammed Morsi on July 3, well before the end of his term.

At the time of the suspension announcement in October, the State Department said that it would continue to give Egypt support for counterterrorism efforts in the Sinai peninsula.

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