US Embassy in Cairo sheltering NGO workers


An Egyptian protester makes the victory sign as thousands gather in Cairo's Tahrir Square during a mass rally against the country's military rulers on December 23, 2011. Egypt has been divided by the clashes between anti-military protesters and soldiers that have left at least 60 people dead over the past two months and overshadowed the first elections since Mubarak's downfall


Fillippo Monteforte

BEIRUT, Lebanon — The American embassy in Cairo is sheltering nongovernmental organization (NGO) workers as Egypt’s ruling military council cracks down on the groups, the Washington Post reported.

The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), Egypt’s ruling military council, has struck out against NGOs in recent weeks, prompting criticism from the US.

More from GlobalPost: US-based non-profits raided by Egyptian forces.

The Post reported that the move marks “a dramatic worsening in Washington’s relationship with Cairo.” However, a State Department official said “they weren’t in any immediate physical danger, that we are aware of.”

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood’s son, Sam LaHood, was recently barred from boarding a flight leaving Cairo. LaHood works for the Cairo office of the International Republican Institute whose mission is to advance "freedom and democracy worldwide by developing political parties, civic institutions, open elections, democratic governance and the rule of law."

More from GlobalPost: Human Rights Watch criticizes Egypt's military government