US Embassy employee detained

Security forces detained Ahmed Alaiba, an Egyptian employee working for the US Embassy in Cairo, on January 25. According to the New York Times, he has been held without charges since then.

The article said on Wednesday that Alaiba worked as a liaison to the Muslim Brotherhood within the embassy, maintaining that the arrest stirred “fears of pressure on Western diplomats who communicate with Islamists.”

The embassy employee was arrested during a Brotherhood protest in Mohandiseen. He was reportedly participating in acts of violence, and is currently being investigated with by the National Security Forces, privately owned Al-Masry Al-Youm said on Wednesday.

Alaiba’s name appeared in the media last summer in a number of leaked emails between him and Brotherhood leader Khairat al-Shater, asking the latter to meet with embassy officials or a congress delegation visiting Egypt. According to the New York Times, Alaiba has no diplomatic immunity.

The US Embassy in Cairo has been communicating with the Egyptian government to gather more information about the circumstances of the detention, privately owned Al-Dostour newspaper said on Thursday.

Egypt has witnessed a government crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood since the ouster of former President Mohamed Morsi, which has included the arrest and detention of students, reporters and activists reportedly ‘sympathetic’ with the group.