Assistant Secretary and Department Spokesperson, Bureau of Public Affairs
September 18, 2016
The United States is troubled by the decision by an Egyptian court to freeze the assets of some of the country's leading human rights organizations – including the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, the Hisham Mubarak Law Center, and the Egyptian Center on the Rights to Education – and their leaders.
These human rights organizations are documenting violations and abuses and defending the freedoms enshrined in Egypt's constitution, and this decision comes against a wider backdrop of closing space for Egyptian civil society. Such restrictions on the space for civil society activity will produce neither stability nor security. We urge the Government of Egypt to lift these asset freezes, take all legally available measures to end the investigations into human rights non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and ease restrictions on association and expression so that these and other NGOs can operate freely.