CAIRO: The U.S. Embassy in Cairo denied rumors that a meeting was held with the Brotherhood Without Violence Movement, saying that it did not even express its intentions to do so.
“What was aired on the Egyptian media about the U.S. Embassy’s request for holding a meeting with the Brotherhood Without Violence Movement is baseless and does not rely on any evidence,” the U.S. Embassy said.
U.S.-Egyptian relations have strained following the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi, with the U.S. initially condemning the ouster of Egypt’s first democratically elected president
Although the Obama administration has not formally described what took place as a military coup, senior U.S. Senator John McCain did refer to it as such in August 2013, in a move separate from the administration’s policy.
In the meantime, several countries have accused the U.S. of pressuring the military council, after it decided to withhold its military aid to Egypt in October 2013, due to the deliberations that took place in response to the ouster of Morsi.
Annual military aid to Egypt has been a staple of the U.S. foreign policy for over 30 years. The Egyptian government received U.S. $1.5 billion of combined military and economic assistance. However, the ouster of Mohamed Morsi, and the following forceful dispersal of the pro-Muslim Brotherhood sit-ins in Rabaa al-Adaweya and Nahda Squares led to tensions in the relations between the two countries.
However, the full aid package to Egypt was conditionally unfrozen in January, but the U.S. has not yet assigned an ambassador to Egypt, after former ambassador Anne Patterson was reportedly promoted as new Deputy Secretary of State.
Patterson has faced wide criticism from Egyptian political movements and media outlets lately due to her statements, which were seen to be supportive of the ousted Brotherhood regime.