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White House rejects ‘false claims’ of interfering in Egypt

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Statement says US ‘not aligned with any political party or group’ as Muslim Brotherhood questions ElBaradei reports

The White House has rejected “false claims” that it is working with specific parties in Egypt to “dictate” how the country should proceed following this week’s military coup.

Breaking its recent silence over events in Cairo, the Obama administration released a statement reiterating that the US was “not aligned with, and does not support, any particular Egyptian political party or group”.

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The statement came as Egypt appeared to prepare to swear in Mohamed ELBaradei, the former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, as an interim prime minister. The Nobel peace laureate had been tipped for the post following the forced removal of Mohamed Morsi.

The announcement – which the Egyptian president’s office later rowed back on, suggesting that other options were being considered – was met by anger from Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood. “We reject this coup and all that results from it, including ElBaradei,” Farid Ismail, of the Brotherhood’s political wing, the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), told the news agency Reuters. He added that ElBaradei was “Washington’s choice”, not that of the people of Egypt. That claim was rejected by the US.

Noting that the situation remained “very fluid”, the White House said that President Barack Obama “condemned the ongoing violence across Egypt and expressed concern over the continued political polarization”.

The statement continued: “The United States categorically rejects the false claims propagated by some in Egypt that we are working with specific political parties or movements to dictate how Egypt’s transition should proceed. We remain committed to the Egyptian people and their aspirations for democracy, economy opportunity, and dignity.

“But the future path of Egypt can only be determined by the Egyptian people.”

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The statement, which followed a conference call between Obama and members of the National Security Council, broke days of silence from the president in regards to violence in Egypt.

© Guardian News and Media 2013

[Image via Agence France-Presse]


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