Egypt asks U.S. to freeze officials’ assets
The post-Mubarak Egyptian government has asked the United States to freeze the financial assets of some officials from that country, according to a senior Obama administration official.
The official, who was not authorized to comment on the record, spoke to CNN on Monday on the condition of anonymity.
The identities of the Egyptian officials are unknown.
During a U.S. State Department briefing earlier Monday, spokesman P.J. Crowley was asked if Egypt had asked for the freezing of assets held by former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and family members in the United States.
“I am not aware of any specific request regarding any funds associated with President Mubarak,” Crowley replied. “Obviously if the Egyptian government makes a particular request, we will take appropriate action.”
The latest speculation about the status of Mubarak family assets in the United States came as U.S. officials on Monday stepped up efforts to assure Egyptians and the restive inhabitants of neighboring countries of the Obama administration’s support for their democratic aspirations.
The White House also took the government of Iran to task for cracking down on public protests by its own people just days after Iranian officials hailed the popular uprising in Egypt.
“What we see happening in Iran today is a testament to the courage of the Iranian people and an indictment of the hypocrisy of the Iranian regime,” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told reporters after leaving a meeting at the U.S. Capitol.
“A regime which over the last three weeks has constantly hailed what went on in Egypt and now when given the opportunity to afford their people the same rights, as they called for on behalf of the Egyptian people, once again illustrates their true nature.”
Clinton repeated the attack in interviews with three Arabic-language news services.
Clinton insisted that the United States has been consistent in its advocacy for democratic reforms in the region, even with its closest allies.
“For many years, both privately and publicly, Democrats and Republican presidents and administrations have delivered the same message to the Egyptian Government: there must be reform, there must be change.” Clinton said in an interview with AlHurra, the Virginia-based Arab-language satellite TV station.
“We were not successful, and neither was the Egyptian opposition or civil society,” Clinton said. “And the pressure just built up, and then we saw the results over the last three weeks.” CNN