Gulf oil aid pours into Egypt
Kuwait has sent two oil tankers carrying crude and diesel worth $200 million to Egypt, according to a Kuwaiti newspaper, as part of a $4 billion aid package pledged by the Gulf state after the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Mursi. Kuwait joined other oil-producing Gulf states in pledging a massive aid package worth $12 billion to Egypt in a show of support after the army toppled the Muslim Brotherhood government. Most US-allied Gulf monarchies regard the Brotherhood as a threat.
Kuwait’s Arabic-language al Rai newspaper quoted oil sources as saying that an oil tanker carrying between 90,000 and 100,000 tonnes of diesel that happened to be travelling through the Suez Canal was diverted to Egypt. A second tanker with 1.1 million barrels of crude was ordered to sail towards Egypt, it said.
The newspaper estimated the value of the cargo on each ship at $100 million.
Kuwaiti officials were not immediately available to comment on the report.
The state news agency KUNA said that Kuwait’s aid package would comprise a $2 billion central bank deposit, a $1 billion grant and $1 billion in oil products. It did not say when the aid would be delivered.
Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates had earlier pledged a total of $8 billion in aid to Egypt.
The rise of Mursi’s Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt since 2011 had unsettled most Gulf states, including the UAE, which feared it would embolden Islamists at home.
Mursi became president a year ago in Egypt’s first freely contested election but was ousted by the military after mass protests against his rule, which critics said was marked by creeping authoritarianism and mismanagement of the economy.
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