US Muslim envoy visiting Egypt

US Muslim envoy visiting Egypt

CAIRO: Special Representative to Muslim Communities for the United States Department of State Farah Pandith will visit Egypt from June 15 to June 18.

The purpose of the visit is to build on President Obama’s historic speech in Cairo, where he stressed that US relations with Muslim communities around the world should be based on “mutual respect and mutual interest.” To that end, she will be meeting with contacts in Cairo and Alexandria and gathering their input for the future of U.S. relations with Muslim majority communities.

During her visit to Egypt, the US Embassy said in a statement, Special Representative Pandith will attend the conference entitled, “New Beginnings: U.S.-Muslim Relations,” to be held at the Alexandria Bibliotecha. She will also visit Sheikh of Al Azhar Dr. Ahmad Mohamed El Tayeb, The English Language Resource Center (ELRC) at Al Azhar University, and the Aga Khan Foundation in Darb Al Ahmar district of Cairo.

As a follow up to President Obama’s Summit on Entrepreneurship, which was held in April 2010, Ms. Pandith will also join a panel discussion with Egyptian alumni of Egyptian-American exchange programs on “Engaging Social Entrepreneurs in Egypt,”

Farah Pandith was appointed Special Representative to Muslim Communities in June 2009.

Her office is responsible for executing Secretary Clinton’s vision for engagement with Muslims around the world on a people-to-people and organizational level. She reports directly to the Secretary of State.

Prior to this appointment, she was Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, focusing on Muslim communities in Europe. Before joining the Department of State, she served as the Director for Middle East Regional Initiatives for the National Security Council. She was responsible for coordinating U.S. policy on “Muslim World” Outreach and the Broader Middle East North Africa initiative.

Prior to joining the NSC, Special Representative Pandith was Chief of Staff for the Bureau for Asia and the Near East for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). She worked directly for the Assistant Administrator for the bureau responsible for more than $4 billion in programs throughout the Middle East, South Asia, and Asia — including Iraq, Afghanistan and Gaza/West Bank. In 2004, she spent two months in Kabul, Afghanistan.

Republished with permission from bikya masr