Egypt Sues UK Over Frozen Mubarak Assets

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on April 16 2012 4:50 PM

Egypt's Ministry of Justice filed suit against the UK Treasury department last month to recover more than £90 million ($140 million) in assets that were frozen during the final days of the rule of Hosni Mubarak.

With the suit, filed in Britain's high administrative court, the Egyptian government is demanding that the UK repatriate the assets it froze during the January 2011 revolution. The British government was the first country to freeze the assets of Mubarak and 18 other people, but Cairo has accused the UK of preventing the return of the assets to the Egyptian people.

UK Treasury is neither helping nor co-operating enough with us to repatriate the frozen assets, an senior Egyptian judicial official told BBC Arabic.

“We argues [sic] that the UK Treasury’s position violates the UN Treaty Against Corruption (UNTC) and an EU regulation issued on 21 March 2011, which calls for recovering suspected assets, we have lots of Money and assets during revolution of 25th Jan., a ministry of justice source told Egyptian news blog Bikyamasr.

Assem Algouhary, head of Illicit Gains Department in the ministry of justice, also said that the treasury refused to reveal any information about the funds or the funds' owners.

“The Asset Freezing Unit (AFU) of the UK Treasury... does not have the authority to repatriate [the assets] to Egypt,” a spokesperson from UK Treasury told Ahram Online.

We are co-operating with the Egyptians within the British laws, a spokesman told BBC Arabic. The Treasury is only responsible for freezing assets and does not have the power or authority to repatriate it.

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