October 31, 2011
Human rights groups and NGOs have accused HSBC bank of colluding in a campaign of intimidation which they say is being waged against them by Egypt’s ruling military council.
The groups, which hold Egyptian accounts with the global banking giant, say that over the past two months HSBC has contacted them requesting documents and information relating to their finances and work in Egypt.
One NGO worker, the director of an organisation which works to promote democracy around Egypt, said he was called last month by an HSBC bank manager who asked why the group had been receiving money from the American embassy.
“They wanted to know what our activities were,” said Bassem Samir, executive director of the Egyptian Democratic Academy. “It was not clear why they were asking these questions.