Local Schools Work to Get Students Home Safely From Egypt

By Chris Gordon
|  Monday, Jan 31, 2011  |  Updated 9:00 PM EDT
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Students from D.C. area schools are cutting short their study abroad time in <a title=Egypt." />

Chris Gordon

Students from D.C. area schools are cutting short their study abroad time in Egypt.

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American University is trying to get 11 students home safely from Egypt. George Washington has 14 there, and the University of Maryland 7.

"There’s a lot of logistics and bureaucratic hoops you have to jump through, but the U.S. State Department is being very helpful," said Daniel Walsch, of George Mason University, which has one student in Egypt.

Georgetown University flew 15 students to Qatar.

The uprising of the Egyptian people in the streets of Cairo with calls for the ouster of President Honsi Mubarak has some local leaders concerned about relations between the U.S., Egypt and Israel. Ronald Halber, the executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington, is concerned if Mubarak is replaced by a fundamentalist, "There will be a new crescent of fundamentalism from Israel's southern boarder to Lebanon, where Hezbollah has taken over."

The Protests in Egypt came as no surprise to American University government Professor Diane Singerman, who lived in Egypt 4-and-a-half years and traveled there last month.

"Egypt has a large population of well-educated youth who can't get jobs," she said. "The only way to get work is to know someone or have connections, and the youth find that humiliating."

Singerman said it appears Mubarak is trying to cling to power or at least participate in a plan of succession, but that's not likely to appear to the protesters.

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