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Egyptian banks to inform government of NGO banking transfers

Amid accusations made by the interim government that many NGOs are receiving external funds, undermining the country's national security, Egypt's Central Bank asks all domestic banks to report on civil society account transfers

Ahram Online , Thursday 4 Aug 2011
Egypt
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Egyptian banks are to inform both the Central Bank of Egypt and the Ministry of Solidarity and Social Justice of any banking transactions made by non-governmental organisations and charity groups.  

The notification made by the Central Bank to all domestic banks in Egypt comes amid accusations made by Egypt's interim government and the ruling military council that many civil society organisations are receiving external funds aimed to undermine the country's national security.

Two weeks ago a statement by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) accused the 6 April Movement of accepting foreign aid in order to create a split between the people and the army. The accusations were met by much criticism by different political groups; however, many expressed the need to monitor organisations that received international funds.

Such demands were further agitated by statements of former US Ambassador to Egypt Margaret Scobey after the revolution where she said that the US granted nearly $40 million to organisations in Egypt.

The Central Bank has asked all domestic banks to ensure that the licenses granted to NGOs by the Ministry of Solidarity are valid and give them the right to receive such funds.

Sources in the Central Bank said that the notification is a precautious measure in place since 11 September 2001 and has nothing to do with accusations against the 6 April Movement. Sources confirmed that this procedure does not give banks the right to block funds recieved by any NGO

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