© 2024 Western New York Public Broadcasting Association

140 Lower Terrace
Buffalo, NY 14202

Mailing Address:
Horizons Plaza P.O. Box 1263
Buffalo, NY 14240-1263

Buffalo Toronto Public Media | Phone 716-845-7000
WBFO Newsroom | Phone: 716-845-7040
Your NPR Station
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Authorities Bar 6 Americans From Leaving Egypt


Egyptian authorities are preventing six Americans from leaving the country. They're involved with international rights groups, the sort of groups that Egyptian security forces raided last month, blaming them for causing trouble. One of the people being kept in Egypt is the son of U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. NPR Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson has the story from Cairo.

SORAYA SARHADDI NELSON, BYLINE: Sam LaHood, who heads the Egypt office of the International Republican Institute, was among the Americans kept from boarding flights out of Egypt in recent days. Four Europeans were also prevented from leaving. No reason was given for the travel ban, although Egyptian authorities are investigating whether the institute and other foreign-based groups are operating illegally here. Last month, security forces ransacked their offices around Egypt, carting away computers and documents. Egypt's ruling generals blamed, quote, "foreign elements" for lingering protests and unrest which led to the crackdown. LaHood's organization was among those monitoring recent parliamentary elections here. The targeted groups and Western officials denounced the raids and travel ban as harassment. U.S. Senator John McCain warned that continued attacks on civil society groups could damage the longstanding partnership between the United States and Egypt. And the State Department's top human rights official, Michael Posner, said the actions could affect the more $1 billion in U.S. aid Egypt receives each year. Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson, NPR News, Cairo. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson
Special correspondent Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson is based in Berlin. Her reports can be heard on NPR's award-winning programs, including Morning Edition and All Things Considered, and read at NPR.org. From 2012 until 2018 Nelson was NPR's bureau chief in Berlin. She won the ICFJ 2017 Excellence in International Reporting Award for her work in Central and Eastern Europe, North Africa, the Middle East and Afghanistan.