Kaine joins Senate push for human rights in Egypt

Sen. Timothy M. Kaine, D-Va., is among a group of 14 senators that have written a letter to Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi today, expressing concern about the June 4, 2013 decision by an Egyptian court to sentence 43 Egyptian and international employees of non-governmental organizations –  including 16 Americans – to jail.

“The United States-Egypt relationship is a strategic and important one, and we value our bilateral security cooperation as an anchor of regional stability,” the letter said.   “At the same time, this court decision is likely to stifle the basic human rights of the Egyptian people and undermine the progress that Egypt has made in the last two years.”

The senators called on  Morsi to immediately address their concerns and allow the organizations to carry out their work in Egypt.

Besides Kaine, the letter was signed by Sens. Marco Rubio, R-Fl., Sheldon Whitehouse , D-RI, Jeanne Shaheen, D-NH,  Jon Tester, D-Mn., Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Kirsten Gillibrand, D-NY, Barbara Boxer, D-Ca.,  Jim Risch, R-Id., Kelly Ayotte, R-NH, Lindsey Graham, R-SC, Chris Murphy, D-Ct.,  Mark Kirk, R-Il.,  and Chris Coons, D-DE.