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Kerry: Egypt’s ‘Military Did Not Take Over’

3:52 PM, Aug 2, 2013 • By JERYL BIER
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During his visit to Pakistan on Thursday, Secretary of State John Kerry gave several TV interviews including one to Hamid Mir of Geo TV.  Mir's first question for Kerry concerned Egypt. The Obama administration has resisted referring to the military action in Egypt as a coup, but in this interview, Kerry went even further, asserting that "the military did not take over, to the best of our judgment so – so far," and that its intervention was at the request of "millions and millions of people" concerned about the increasing chaos in the country [emphasis added]:

QUESTION: Thank you very much for giving us time. My first question is about your commitment with democracy. The U.S. believes in democracy, U.S. is a champion of democracy all over the world. But why U.S. is not taking a clear position on military intervention against the democratically elected government of President Morsy in Egypt? 

SECRETARY KERRY: Well, it’s a very appropriate and important question, and I want to answer it very directly. The military was asked to intervene by millions and millions of people, all of whom were afraid of a descendance into chaos, into violence. And the military did not take over, to the best of our judgment so – so far. To run the country, there’s a civilian government. In effect, they were restoring democracy. And the fact is -- 

QUESTION: By killing people on the roads? 

SECRETARY KERRY: Oh, no. That’s not restoring democracy, and we’re very, very concerned about, very concerned about that. And I’ve had direct conversations with President Mansour, with Vice President ElBaradei, with General al-Sisi, as have other members of our government. And I’ve talked to the Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy, so I’ve been in touch with all of the players there. And we have made it clear that that is absolutely unacceptable, it cannot happen. 

Now, as you know, these situations can be very confusing and very difficult. We’re working very hard right now with Lady Catherine Ashton, with various officials, with other foreign ministers of other countries, in order to try to see if we can resolve this peacefully. But the story of Egypt is not finished yet, so we have to see how it unfolds in the next days.

The Egypt military continues to hold former president Morsi in secret detention.

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