Inside Story

Is the US punishing Egypt by cutting aid?

Washington is withholding millions of dollars in aid to Cairo over concerns of human rights abuses.

Egypt had been a long time ally of the United States before their relationship was strained after the 2013 military coup that put president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in power.

But that all changed when US President Donald Trump came to office in January. Sisi was one of the first leaders to visit him at the White House.

Human rights groups have accused Sisi’s government of extensive human rights violations.

Now, Trump’s administration says it will deny Egypt $290m worth of financial aid, citing the government’s inability to make progress towards improving human rights.

So, is there a shift in US policy towards Egypt?

Presenter: Richelle Carey


Timothy Kaldas – Non-resident fellow at the Tahrir Institute for Middle East politics

Michelle Dunne – Former Middle East specialist at the US State Department

Maha Azzam – Head of Egyptian Revolutionary Council