Clinton emails: Egypt worked to contain the turmoil in Libya to avoid regional instability

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Mon, 12 Oct 2020 - 09:26 GMT

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CAIRO – 12 October 2020: One of the former US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton’s emails, which have been recently declassified by US President’s Donald Trump’s administration, revealed Egypt’s foreign policy towards the Libyan turmoil after the outbreak of protests against Late Libyan Commander Muammar al-Gaddafi in 2011.
 
Dated back to April 8, 2011, an e-mail sent to Hillary and titled “UK game playing; new rebel strategists; Egypt moves in. Sid,” said that Cairo was interested to contain any turmoil in Libya that could affect Egypt.
 
“Egypt has a growing interest in keeping a close eye on jihadist movements in eastern Libya. This is especially true as the Egyptian Military is already concerned about Islamist militancy overflow from Gaza, after their forces were pulled back to Cairo during the uprising against Mubarak. In the event Qaddafi's forces invade the east, Egypt is the most logical destination for refugees from Libyan. Egypt has an interest in controlling any turmoil in Libya that could harm efforts to restart its struggling economy,” the e-mail said.
 
“A source with excellent access to the highest levels of the SUPREME COUNCIL OF THE ARMED FORCES (SCAF) states that the Egyptian Military has turned its full attention to the crisis in Libya. Traditionally, Egypt is a strong influence in the eastern Libyan region of Cyrenaica [eastern coastal region of Libya] and is now taking advantage of the current crisis to regain that position,” the e-mail read.
 
The email talked about Egypt’s plans in the case of Qaddafi’s downfall, mentioning the reasons for Egypt’s interests to avoid turmoil in Libya; “in the event, Qaddafi's forces invade the east, Egypt is the most logical destination for refugees from Libyan. Egypt has an interest in controlling any turmoil in Libya that could harm efforts to restart its struggling economy,” the email said.
 
One of the reasons is that Libya was a vital place for Egyptian migrant laborers who bring their home millions of dollars in remittances. “According to the Egyptian Labor Ministry, around 1.5 million Egyptians reside and work in Libya, sending home an estimated $254 million in remittances. In the past few years, Qaddafi has placed heavy restrictions on foreign workers, and Egypt hopes that a new regime will be more flexible, and open to receiving Egyptian workers,” the e-mail added. 
 
Radical Islamists like Al-Qaeda-affiliate in Libya was a direct threat against Egypt, the email said, adding “Egypt has a growing interest in keeping a close eye on jihadist movements in eastern Libya. This is especially true as the Egyptian Military is already concerned about Islamist militancy overflow from Gaza, after their forces were pulled back to Cairo during the uprising against Mubarak.”
 
The email also stated that the then-government which ruled by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) was keen to “reestablish” Egypt’s role in the region, saying “ So far, Egypt has fostered discussions in the Palestinian territories between Fatah and Hamas, while reaching out to Syria and Saudi Arabia on the issue of Iran. (Source Comment: According to a sensitive diplomatic source, the current Egyptian diplomatic strategy is to enhance its stature by defending the Libyan people against Qaddafi's regime, while at the same time, distancing itself from any military intervention led by the region's former colonial powers in Europe.)”
 
“(Source Comment: According to a sensitive diplomatic source, the current Egyptian diplomatic strategy is to enhance its stature by defending the Libyan people against Qaddafi's regime, while at the same time, distancing itself from any military intervention led by the region's former colonial powers in Europe.) It should be noted that, in the opinion of knowledgeable sources, Egypt cannot count on the support of every Arab power in the region. Egypt led the call for imposing the no-fly zone in Libya, while Algeria, while Yemen, and Syria voted against it. These countries (especially Yemen) fear the precedence that would be created for their own governments in the event Qaddafi is ousted,” the e-mail read.
 
In another email detain back to the 2nd of March 2011 and posted in November 2015, it was revealed how the Egyptian government at that time dealt with the World Food Program (WFP) in providing humanitarian aid to the Libyan people following the outbreak of the civil war that led to the migrants of hundred thousand of people from Libya.
 
“Latest reports show that the influx of people from Libya into Egypt has subsided and that most people who came have proceeded beyond border areas, except for a few hundred people (up to 1,000). UNHCR, WFP, and UNICEF discussed contingency plans for potential activation of assistance in case the influx starts again. […] Security Reports from organizations in Egypt that managed to access eastern Libya or were in contact with local groups to a large extent,” the email said.
 
“Relief supplies that can be provided immediately from Egypt to Libya and other supply chain options are being deployed. WFP Logistics is supporting IOM and the Egyptian Government in chartering a boat to transport displaced Egyptian migrant workers from Tunisia to Egypt,” the email added.
 
Hundreds of emails, have been publicly published on the U.S. state administration website upon president Trump orders to his Foreign Minister Mike Pompeo. 
 
Using Clinton to private email server was attacked by trump since he was campaigning against her in 2016, saying that Clinton should be trailed for these emails.
 
October 7, Trump said on his twitter account that he authorized the declassification of Clinton emails, describing it as ‘crime’ in America’s history.
 
“I have fully authorized the total Declassification of any & all documents pertaining to the single greatest political CRIME in American History, the Russia Hoax. Likewise, the Hillary Clinton Email Scandal. No redactions!” Trump wrote.

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