Egypt requests freeze on Mubarak assets abroad

Mubarak is thought to have grown wealthy during his 3 decades of power.

Cairo: Egypt`s prosecutor general on Monday
requested a freeze on the foreign assets of Hosni Mubarak and
his family, 10 days after the long time president resigned in
the face of a popular uprising.

Abdel Magid Mahmud tasked Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul
Gheit with contacting foreign countries to seek a freeze on
assets held by Mubarak, his wife Suzanne, sons Alaa and Gamal
and their wives Heidi Rashekh and Khadiga al-Gammal, his
office said.

Mubarak is widely thought to have grown wealthy during
his three decades in power, although an unidentified legal
adviser was quoted by the state-run MENA news agency yesterday
as saying that talk of a multi-billion-dollar fortune was
nothing but "a groundless rumour".

Switzerland, which froze Mubarak`s assets within hours
of his resignation on February 11, said yesterday that the
former president had "tens of millions of francs" in Swiss
financial institutions.

"We do not yet know if these funds are legitimate or
not," said Swiss foreign ministry Stefan von Below, adding
that if they had been illegally obtained, "competent judicial
bodies will decide who are the entitled parties".

Twelve people have had their assets pre-emptively
frozen by Switzerland, including Mubarak`s immediate family
members as well as four of his government ministers.

One Swiss franc is worth about one US dollar or 77
euro cents.

The fate of Mubarak`s assets in the European Union was
likely to come up on Tuesday when EU foreign policy chief
Catherine Ashton visits Cairo, after ambassadors from the 27
EU member states agreed in principle in Brussels on Friday to
freeze the assets of members of his inner circle.

Mubarak, 82, withdrew to his heavily-guarded villa in
the Red Sea resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh on the day that he
stepped down. He has not been publicly seen since, amid
speculation about his health.


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