US Secretary of State John Kerry meets with members of the Egyptian defence leadership,
CAIRO: US Secretary of State John Kerry said yesterday that his country is committed to working with Egypt’s interim rulers, on his first visit to Cairo since the army ousted president Mohammed Mursi.
On the eve of the opening of Mursi’s trial, Kerry was in Cairo to shore up ties with a key ally and ensure it moves ahead on plans to restore democracy, just weeks after Washington partly suspended aid to Egypt.
“We are committed to work with and we will continue our cooperation with the interim government,” Kerry told a joint news conference with Egyptian foreign minister Nabil Fahmy, urging “inclusive, free and fair elections”.
“The United States is a friend of the people of Egypt, of the country of Egypt, and we are a partner,” he stressed. Kerry said he had candid discussions with Fahmy, and he had other meetings later with interim president Adly Mansour and powerful military chief Abdel Fattah Al Sisi.
Kerry also endorsed the interim government’s moves to restore full democracy in Egypt. According to the interim government’s timetable, parliamentary elections are to be held by mid-2014 followed by presidential polls. “The roadmap is being carried out to the best of our perception,” Kerry said. Fahmy vowed that there would be a return to civilian government in his country. AFP