Entries in Raids (4)


Egypt Agrees to Release NGO Property, Cease Harassment: US Official

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(CAIRO, Egypt) -- According to a Senior Administration official, the U.S. Ambassador in Egypt Anne Patterson has received assurances from Egyptian authorities that they will release the property of Non-Government Organizations, including several supported by the U.S. government, that were raided in Cairo Thursday.
“The Ambassador has sought and received Egyptian leadership assurances that the raids will cease and property will be returned immediately. She has also made clear that we expect all international NGOs, including those that receive U.S. government support, be able to return to normal operations as soon as possible in support of the democratic transition underway in Egypt,” the official said.
Patterson spoke with Egypt’s new Prime Minister and military leadership Thursday and again Friday.
“Ambassador Patterson has agreed to participate in a dialogue with appropriate Egyptian authorities to resolve the underlying issues related to the operation of U.S.-supported NGOs in a transparent, open manner. These NGOs should be allowed to operate freely as they do in countries around the world in support of democracy and free elections,” the official added.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


US Responds to Raids of American-Based NGOs in Egypt

FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The White House was taken aback Thursday by reports that Egypt's military government sanctioned the raids of right groups in Cairo and elsewhere, including three U.S.-based organizations.

A spokesman for Egypt's general prosecutor's office said the 17 raids on at least 10 nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) was in response to accusations that they were allegedly operating without licenses and had taken foreign money illegally.

But critics contend that the military regime that replaced ousted President Hosni Mubarak is simply trying to exert its authority over independent groups monitoring its activities.

The three U.S.-based entities were Freedom House, the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute.

In Washington, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said, "This action is inconsistent with the bilateral cooperation we have had over many years."  She added, "We don't think that this action is justified, and we want to see the harassment end, and we want to see the property returned and the staff allowed to proceed as normal."

David Kramer, the president of Freedom House, was more critical of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces -- the military chiefs now ruling Egypt -- saying, "These actions come in the context of an intensive campaign by the Egyptian government to dismantle civil society through a politically motivated legal campaign aimed at preventing 'illegal foreign funding' of civil society operations in Egypt."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Report: US Raids Have Removed 900 Taliban Leaders in Afghanistan

Majid Saeedi/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The White House and Defense Department have been careful not to raise expectations about the progress of the war in Afghanistan, even after nearly ten years of fighting.

But a new report by U.S. military leaders indicates that the Taliban has suffered significant losses in the past ten months that have hampered the group's ability to take the offensive.

Maj. Sunset Belinsky of the International Stability Assistance Force said Monday that as many as 900 Taliban leaders have either been killed or captured since the spring of 2010 and this has resulted in the insurgency struggling to find replacements.

Belinsky, whose force oversees coalition military operations in Afghanistan, explained that "insurgents have actually refused to take over the leadership positions, have had difficulty finding technical experts, such as IED facilitators, gun runners and bomb trainers."

An increase in U.S. Special Operations units conducting raids has been a major factor in contributing to the leadership vacuum.

Still, the real proof in how well these attacks on Taliban's leaders have worked will come during the spring and summer months, when the insurgency is traditionally its most aggressive.´╗┐

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Karzai: Time to Reduce US Military Operations in Afghanistan

Photo Courtesy - SHAH MARAI/AFP/Getty Images(KABUL, Afghanistan) -- In an interview with The Washington Post, Afghan President Hamid Karzai criticizes the U.S. military strategy in his country, urging the U.S. to confine its troops more to their bases and end night raids that target senior commanders.

Karzai says Afghans have lost patience with U.S. troops, and that the U.S "should and could" draw down its forces in 2011.

"The time has come to reduce military operations," Karzai said. "The time has come to reduce the presence of, you know, boots in Afghanistan … to reduce the intrusiveness into the daily Afghan life."

Karzai has raised his frustration with night raids in the past, and has urged the U.S. military to spend less time in Afghan villages and more time fighting the “source” of the Taliban in Pakistan.

"The raids are a problem always. They were a problem then, they are a problem now. They have to go away," Karzai says. "The Afghan people don't like these raids, if there is any raid it has to be done by the Afghan government within the Afghan laws. This is a continuing disagreement between us."

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio´╗┐

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