Egyptian-American woman freed in Egypt goes home on US military plane

US Secretary of Defense James Mattis takes questions during a briefing at the Pentagon in Washington DC

An Egyptian-American charity worker, who was imprisoned in Egypt for three years, returned home to the USA on Thursday after Trump Administration negotiations with the Egyptian government, reports the Washington Post.

Aides said Trump had personally requested her release in a meeting April 3 with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi but had done so privately and made no public mention of her case.

A US government aircraft brought the group to the USA late Thursday night.

In what appears to be a major foreign-policy victory for President Trump, a freed Egyptian-American charity worker is back in the United States after the president personally intervened in the case, officials say.

A Cairo court finally acquitted Hijazi Sunday on charges of human trafficking, sexual exploitation of minors and using children in protests - all considered baseless by human rights groups and US officials.

But US media report the cosy bilateral capped a flurry of behind-the-scenes diplomacy by Trump administration officials to secure Ms Hijazi's release.

She had been in custody for 33 months in violation of Egyptian law, which states that the maximum period for pretrial detention is 24 months.

Powell was in Egypt as part of US Defense Chief, James Mattis' convoy in the region.

McMullen added that Egyptian authorities unlawfully arrested Hijazi and her husband, and the couple was detained without even being told what the charges were until months later.

'It's been a roller coaster of emotions the past couple of days, ' Basel Hijazi told the Post in a telephone interview Thursday from aboard the plane.

During her visit to the White House, Trump said he was very happy to have the aid worker back in the U.S. He did not take questions from reporters in the room. "We're crying with relief to have them out". Obama froze aid to Egypt for two years after Sisi, then a general, overthrew President Mohamed Morsi in mid-2013.

"In other words, [Trump] looks at what Obama did and says, 'I'm going to do something very, very different, '" Gelvin said. Sissi's post-coup crackdown has been particularly severe against civil society groups, especially those receiving money from overseas.

He leaves Thursday afternoon to Israel to meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, and President Reuven Rivlin.

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