The White House on Wednesday denied reports that military aid to Egypt would be cut, following U.S. media speculations over the matter.“The reports that we are halting all military assistance to Egypt are false,” National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said.
“We will announce the future of our assistance relationship with Egypt in the coming days, but as the President Obama made clear at UNGA (the United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York), that assistance relationship will continue.”
Hayden’s statements came after a U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity to Reuters, said the administration was leaning toward withholding most military aid, except to promote counterterrorism, security in the Sinai Peninsula that borders Israel, and other such priorities.
Also citing an anonymous U.S. source, CNN reported the plans to cut off aid in the wake of the July ouster of Islamist President Mohammad Mursi and subsequent deadly violence.
The source told CNN that the decision was motivated by an “accumulation of events” that includes violence against protesters, many of whom died over the weekend.
The suspension will take place in the next few days, CNN reported.
After Mursi’s ouster, the Obama administration said it would suspend about $585 million in military assistance to Egypt pending a wider policy review.
The United States has long provided Egypt with about $1.55 billion in annual aid, including $1.3 billion in military assistance, according to Reuters.