1 March 2014

Egypt: Foreign Ministry - U.S. Report On Human Rights in Egypt Is Imbalanced

Cairo — The United States report on human rights in Egypt is imbalanced and contains several fallacies, said Ambassador Badr Abdel Aati, Egypt's Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Saturday.

Ambassador Abdel Aati stated that the report was "imbalanced and biased".

"America appoints itself a lawyer and advocate of human rights issues globally without any legitimate support," Abdel Aati said at a press conference broadcast on national television.

The U.S. Department of State report cited "the removal of an elected civilian government" and "excessive use of force by security forces" as the most significant human rights problems in Egypt.

The report also said that human rights problems included disappearances, harsh conditions in prison, arbitrary arrests and prolonged pretrial detentions, and impunity for security sources.

Abdel Aati pointed that the report is an annual assessment of human rights issues across the globe.

Egypt can understand that such report may be issued by the United Nations or human rights organisations, but a U.S. Department of State report echoes that entity's wish to appoint itself a referee, judge and advocate of human rights, the spokesman added.

The report includes fallacies and overlooks the "terrorism" and the acts of violence which the country, the police, and the army are subjected to, Abdel Aati stated.

Egyptian-American ties have been strained since former President Mohamed Mursi was ousted last July following mass protests against his rule.

Last October, Washington said it halted part of its military and economic aid to Egypt until there is progress towards democracy.

During a visit to Cairo in early 2014, U.S. Congress representatives have expressed their support for the interim government in Egypt and for the steps it is taking to achieve democracy.

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