The US embassy in Egypt told Ahram Online on Tuesday that US Ambassador to Egypt Robert Stephen Beecroft remains the US envoy to the country, denying reports that the ambassador resigned and travelled back to Washington based on a mandate issued last month by the new US administration.
On 23 December, the US Department of State issued a diplomatic cable on Trump’s behalf notifying politically appointed ambassadors that they are required to leave their posts by 20 January, a routine directive traditionally given by new US administrations.
“Ambassador Beecroft remains the ambassador of Egypt. He has left Cairo to Washington for routine consultations,” the embassy spokesman said, adding that the new administration would decide if he remains in his post in Cairo.
The ambassador is scheduled to return to Egypt in February, the spokesperson said.
On Tuesday, several Egyptian news websites cited diplomatic sources saying that Beecroft travelled to Washington “for consultations following his resignation,” where he would present his vision to the new administration.
Beecroft was appointed as ambassador to Egypt in 2014 by then-president Barack Obama, replacing ambassador Ann Patterson.
Beecroft served as US ambassdor to Iraq from 2012 to 2014, and has served in Washington as executive assistant to two secretaries of state and special assistant to a deputy secretary of state.
He has also held posts in the Department of State’s Executive Secretariat and Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs.