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State Department to meet with Egypt's interim government

The State Department's Deputy State Secretary William Burns will land in Egypt on Monday to meet with Egypt's interim government in Cairo.

William J. Burns State DepartmentEnlarge
Deputy Secretary of State William J. Burns at a press conference at the US Treasury Department on July 11, 2013 in Washington, DC. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

Deputy State Secretary William Burns will travel to Egypt next week and meet interim government officials, civil society leaders and businessmen to stress Washington's support for free and fair elections and non-violence.

Burns is the first senior-level United States official to visit Cairo since a popular uprising backed by the military overthrew Egypt's first democratically elected government and its president, Mohamed Morsi.

From July 14 - 16, Burns "will underscore US support for the Egyptian people, an end to all violence, and a transition leading to an inclusive, democratically elected civilian government," the State Department said in a brief statement on Sunday.

It was not clear whether Burns, who speaks Arabic and has considerable experience in the Middle East, will meet with Morsi, his Muslim Brotherhood supporters or the military leaders who ousted him earlier this month.  

A Brotherhood spokesman told the Los Angeles Times later Monday that US officials spoke to members of the group by phone but could not meet in person on Monday. 

The US embassy has also reopened in Cairo after being closed for two weeks amid protests, reported USA Today and the LA Times

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/middle-east/130714/state-departments-bill-burns-meet-egypt-interim-government