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U.S. defends stance on Egypt

WASHINGTON, Aug. 11 (UPI) -- Washington said it was concerned with anti-American sentiment developing in Egypt, saying accusations targeting its envoy to Cairo are off the mark.

The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that anti-American sentiment in post-revolution Egypt was at a high. The report points to a cover of a July edition of a state-run news magazine depicting U.S. Ambassador to Egypt Anne Patterson lighting dynamite with a burning wad of U.S. dollar bills. The title of the edition reads in Arabic "Ambassador From Hell Is Setting Tahrir on Fire."

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Victoria Nuland, a spokeswoman for the U.S. State Department, said targeting Patterson was inappropriate and "unacceptable."

GALLERY: Arab Spring, Revolutions of 2011

A report in the Los Angeles Times notes that Egypt, a strong U.S. ally under former President Hosni Mubarak, is moving closer to its "authoritarian neighbors" in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere in the Arab world.

The Times notes Washington plans to provide $65 million in aid to fledgling Egyptian political parties this year.

"We are very strong supporters of Egypt's transition to a democratic future and we will continue to be there for Egypt," added Nuland.

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The ruling military council in Egypt has faced mounting frustration from its people over the pace of reforms in the country.

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