Amnesty urges US to clarify destination of arms headed to Egypt
CAIRO - Amnesty International has called on the United States to clarify the final destination of an arms shipment it said was headed to Egypt, in a statement late on Thursday.
The London-based rights group had earlier said the shipment may be abused by Egyptian security forces, which had fired at protesters in deadly protests in recent months.
But the US Navy said the shipment would not be offloaded in Egypt without clarifying its final destination, the London-based organisation said in a subsequent statement.
Amnesty says the Dutch-flagged vessel, MV Schippersgracht, which left the US Military Ocean Terminal Sunny Point (MOTSU), is "carrying a class of dangerous goods that covers cartridges for weapons, fuses and other ammunition" and is headed to Egypt's Port Said.
Port Said is situated on the northern tip of the Suez Canal, which leads to the Red Sea and several countries that receive weapons from the United States.
"Amnesty International is urging US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to clarify who is the final recipient of the latest cargo," the statement said.
It also demanded assurances that arms shipments would not be sent to countries that might use them to commit human rights violations.
Protesters have repeatedly taken to the streets to demand political change, including the ouster of the ruling military, which took power when president Hosni Mubarak was ousted by a popular uprising last year.
Dozens have been killed in clashes with the military and police since October.