Kerry calls for speeding up Egypt transition: US spokesperson

Ahram Online , Wednesday 24 Jul 2013

US Secretary of State John Kerry discussed Egypt's transition with interim VP Mohamed ElBaradei and FM Nabil Fahmy on Tuesday, says State Department spokesperson

John Kerry
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (Photo: Reuters)

The United States supports the political transition and election of a civilian government in Egypt, US State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki told reporters during a press briefing on Tuesday.

"Secretary of State Kerry spoke yesterday with interim Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy. He also spoke with interim Vice President Mohamed ElBaradei. That was actually a call that happened yesterday as well," she said.

Psaki pointed out that Kerry discussed with both top-level officials a wide range of issues, including the transition in Egypt and "other regional issues."

"The Secretary also spoke with the Foreign Minister – with the interim Foreign Minister I should say, on July 18th after the cabinet was sworn in," she pointed out.

Kerry, during those conversations, asserted Washington's support for the Egyptian people "during this important time," along with backing an "inclusive, democratically-elected civilian government."

However, Kerry expressed concern about the "levels of arrests and crackdown on the media," agreeing to be on "regular touch" throughout the transitional process.

Psaki concluded her statement on Egypt by saying that the hastening of Egypt's return to a democratically elected government is the US main concern in the meantime.

"That will be consistent with our legal requirements and our national security interests. But beyond that, I don’t have any update for you on our policy as it relates to Egypt," Psaki noted. 

Egypt's army deposed Morsi on 3 July following mass nationwide protests against him. Morsi has been held incommunicado at an unidentified location since his ouster.

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