Egyptian security forces stormed the offices of 10 human-rights and pro-democracy groups yesterday, including several based in the U.S., accused by the country's military rulers of destabilizing security by fomenting protests with the help of foreign funding.
The raids on 17 offices throughout Egypt are part of the ruling generals' attempt to blame "foreign hands" for the unrest that continues to roil Egypt since the 18-day revolt that ousted longtime leader Hosni Mubarak in February, but that activists say failed to topple his regime.
The Obama administration demanded that Egyptian authorities immediately halt the raids on non-governmental organizations (NGOs), saying that they are "inconsistent" with long-standing U.S-Egypt cooperation.
Egypt's leading pro-democracy advocate, Mohamed ElBaradei, a Nobel peace laureate, denounced the raids.
The security sweep on civil society offices comes on the heels of a military crackdown on protesters demanding that ruling generals hand over power to a civilian authority.