The United States could enact sanctions on Egypt through the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act of 2017 (CAATSA), if Egypt goes ahead with its planned purchase if the Russian built Sukhoi Su-35 superflanker fighter jet.
In an apparent warning to Egypt, US Secretary of state Mike Pompeo said that “We’ve made clear that, if those systems were to be purchased, statute CAATSA would require sanctions on the regime.”
Pompeo also disclosed during a Senate hearing to review his department’s budget on 9 April. “We have received assurances from the Egyptians that they understand that sanctions will be imposed and I am very hopeful that they will decide not to move forward with that acquisition.
The Trump administration is worried about what it called “Cairo’s deepening relationship with Moscow,” explaining that such a move has “alarmed” the US Government – Egypt’s long time strategic ally.
A U.S. senior official told the media outlet, “In terms of the expanding Russian influence in the region, that’s obviously something which we are quite concerned [about]. We don’t see a lot of material benefits to engagements with the Russians. We just would encourage the Egyptians to turn more toward the West, toward the United States.”