US House of Representatives rejects bid to cut aid to Egypt
The US House of Representatives has overwhelmingly rejected a measure aimed at punishing Egypt for airing an allegedly anti-Jewish television program and restricting its anti-terrorist cooperation with Washington.
The measure, an amendment to the foreign aid bill for fiscal 2005, would have reclassified $570 million in aid to Egypt from military to economic.
Proposed by Democratic Representative for California Tom Lantos, the amendment was rejected last week by a 287 to 131 vote, according to congressional records.
Lantos accused Cairo of stockpiling arms and over-exaggerating the military threat of neighbouring Israel.
Egypt is only second to Israel as a recipient of US aid. Israel receives $3 billion per annum - $1.2 billion in economic aid and $1.8 billion in military aid.
US Secretary of State Colin Powell wrote to Congress that cutting military aid to Cairo would send the wrong signal at a time when Egypt has started working with Israel on the latter's pullout plan from the occupied Gaza Strip. (menareport.com)
© 2004 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)