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Sen. Cardin Halts U.S. Military Funding for Egypt in Wake of Menendez Bribery Indictment

HeadlineOct 04, 2023

Maryland Senator Ben Cardin, the new chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has blocked $235 million in U.S. military funding to Egypt, citing human rights concerns. Cardin replaced New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez as head of the powerful committee after Menendez was indicted on federal bribery charges, including accusations he used his position to help New Jersey businessmen and the Egyptian government.

After Israel, Egypt is the second-largest recipient of U.S. foreign military aid, despite the well-known abuses of President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s government, including its harsh crackdown on dissent and the press. Cardin said the funding would be blocked until his committee saw reforms on pretrial detention and the release of political prisoners. El-Sisi is widely expected to win Egypt’s upcoming December election.

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