Via Ahram Online
Delegation wraps up a visit to the Mediterranean island in search of funds allegedly stashed there by figures from the Mubarak regime; Egyptian ambassador praises 'productive' meetings
An Egyptian delegation is rounding off a visit to Cyprus aimed at tracking state funds allegedly siphoned from Egypt to the island nation during the 30-year rule of Hosni Mubarak.Proceedings have been launched in Cyprus against four companies in a bid to find assets connected to the former regime, a Cyprus newpaper reported on Sunday.On Thursday, a four-member delegation of Egyptian judges flew to the Mediterranean island to continue tracking Egyptian monies allegedly stashed there by figures connected to ex-president Hosni Mubarak and his regime.The delegation is due home later on Sunday after meeting Cypriot officials.The group met on Friday with officials from Cyprus's Justice Ministry and Unit for Combatting Money Laundering (MOKAS), seeking documents which could help identify links to Mubarak-era figures."The meeting went very well. It was very productive. The Cyprus government is giving full support," the Egyptian Ambassador, Menha Mahrous Bakhoum, told the Cyprus Mail."There is nothing concrete yet. We are investigating," she added.She reiterated that the main point of this visit was to find out how to retrieve all assets belonging to members of the Mubarak regime and their families."This is a very top priority topic among the masses and Egyptian population. They have been protesting for days and months for this. Even in the early weeks of the revolution, recovering those assets was a demand of all the revolutionaries in the street," Bakhoum was also quoted as saying.Egypt's Assistant Minister of Justice, Adel Fahmi, who led the delegation, said Egypt had called for Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) in searching for assets from all the world's nations after Mubarak's resignation in February 2011"Some of the difficulties and obstacles we and other countries are facing is that we don’t know the exact place where the money is, in which bank and in whose name," Fahmi told the Cypriot newspaper.Switzerland and UK have already frozen an estimated 445 million euros worth of assets linked to former regime figures.