The Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned the US Ambassador in Egypt to show displeasure over a visit of Muslim Brotherhood figures to Washington DC.
Reports emerged on Monday that the ministry summoned Ambassador Stephen Beecroft to voice objections. Although officials from both sides refused to confirm the reports, informed sources confirmed the news to Daily News Egypt on Tuesday.
A Muslim Brotherhood delegation visited the US capital, and included former presidential advisor Wael Haddara, and leader and former minister of planning with the Brotherhood’s political arm, the now dissolved Freedom and Justice Party, Amr Darrag, according to the US think tank Washington Institute. The think tank’s fellow, Eric Trager, advised the US administration against meeting with the figure or engaging with the organisation.
“I will not comment on this issue,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Badr Abdelatty said, when asked Tuesday by Daily News Egypt to confirm the summoning.
The Us Department of State spokesman, Jeff Rathke, acknowledged in the daily press briefing on Monday the reports about the delegation’s visit to Washington. He did not, however, comment on possible meetings between the Muslim Brotherhood figures and US officials, referring the questions to the “individuals in the delegation”.
Brotherhood members were not available to comment on the schedule of their visit, but no meetings with officials were announced by the US.
When pressed to clarify the US policy on meeting with Brotherhood members, Rathke said the policy has been engaging with “representatives from across the political spectrum in Egypt”, stating that this policy did not change.
The spokesman did not confirm the reports on summoning the US Ambassador by the Egyptian government, while an embassy official also did not confirm the news when asked by Daily News Egypt Tuesday. The embassy official said: “I’m not in a position to disclose anything more about it more than what was said in the [Department of State] daily briefing.”