The outgoing US President Donald Trump accused the Egyptian army of using American money to buy Russian weapons, which prompted him to wave against the new budget bill to revive the economy to confront the Corona pandemic.
Trump criticized – in a video clip on Twitter – the foreign aid item in the new budget of $ 892 billion, and said that it wastes Americans’ money, and Trump cited an example of that with US aid that goes to Egypt every year.
“The bill that they are now planning to send to my office is very different from what was expected … it is really a disgrace,” Trump said – in a video clip on Twitter.
On Tuesday, the US Congress passed the government’s spending budget bill for next year, the usual military aid to Egypt, which amounts to about $ 1.3 billion.
But Congress linked the release of more than $ 300 million in funds allocated to Egypt with progress in releasing political prisoners, human rights defenders and religious minorities.
A provision in the law stipulates a $ 75 million freeze until the US Secretary of State submits a report to inform lawmakers of the progress made by Cairo in the area of releasing prisoners.
Another item linked the release of $ 225 million from the grant to strengthening the principle of rule of law and support for democratic institutions and human rights, including the protection of religious minorities.
The Freedom Initiative website considered that lawmakers sent a strong message to Egypt that its systematic use of detention to silence activists and journalists does not serve the national security interests of the United States.
But Trump threatened to reject the budget bill, and said he wants Congress to increase the stimulus amount to $ 2,000 for individuals or $ 4,000 for couples, instead of $ 600 for individuals.
“I also ask Congress to immediately get rid of the unnecessary waste elements in this legislation, and send me an appropriate bill, otherwise the next administration will have to provide a relief package for Covid-19,” he added.
Al-Jazeera correspondent Abdel Moneim Al-Amrani explained that President Trump surprised everyone with the timing, not his rejectionist stance, and indicated that commentators believe that this comes within his approach, through which he seeks to remain in the political and media front, and to undermine the administration of his successor, Joe Biden.
This comes at a time when officials in the Republican and Democratic parties accuse Russia of involvement in the operations of penetration of state institutions, while Trump softens the tone of the accusation against Russia and says that the breach may have been by China.
President-elect Joe Biden said the president needed to blame Russia, something he has yet to do despite Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Attorney General William Barr indicting Moscow.