How to avoid a visa ban from Egypt
A travel ban on Egypt has been extended until March 18, 2020.
The US government said in a statement on Monday that it had decided to extend the ban because of security concerns.
Egyptian authorities have repeatedly warned against travel to the US after the killing of the Muslim Brotherhood leader in a Cairo hotel last year, leading to an unprecedented crackdown on freedom of speech and the press.
The restrictions have led to a crackdown on internet activities, which in turn has led to increased numbers of arrests and prosecutions.
On Tuesday, the Egyptian interior ministry reported that 469 people had been arrested since the end of February, including 11 people on terrorism-related charges.
The government said it had also issued travel bans on some foreign nationals suspected of links to the Brotherhood.
The new restrictions are the latest in a series of attempts to impose a travel ban against the Muslim world, which was first imposed in January.
The United Nations has warned that Egypt is now a country with the worst human rights record in the world.
In January, a group of more than 60 rights organisations urged the US to suspend the ban and release the imprisoned journalists Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed.
The move has caused outrage and even prompted protests across the Muslim-majority nation.
In a separate move, Egyptian authorities in March 2017 detained dozens of US journalists including investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald.
Mr Greenwald said he had received death threats after publishing a series on Egypt’s crackdown on media.
A few days later, the US State Department said it would not continue to grant visas to Egyptian nationals, citing security concerns over the country’s ongoing crackdown.
The State Department has also suspended its cooperation with Egypt on the US-led sanctions against Iran.
The decision comes as the US and the European Union seek to improve their relationship following the death of US spy Michael Hastings in Egypt.
Mr Hastings, who was working for a pro-democracy group called the Committee to Protect Journalists, was found dead in a car on December 29.
His body was found by a US Air Force plane, hours after he had been reported missing, and his death sparked protests across Egypt and the region.
Egypt has also been criticised for its handling of the crisis, with President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s government accused of orchestrating the crackdown on the protesters.
The ruling Sisi family is also under intense pressure after his wife, the country ‘s first lady, was arrested in January and charged with “insulting the king” for allegedly having a relationship with a journalist who broke a law against “insults to the king”.