(By Deutsche Welle) The US has called for a quick return to democratic rule in Egypt. But with billions in aid at stake, Washington has stopped short of calling President Morsi’s overthrow by the military a coup d’état.
More than two years after US President Barack Obama backed the overthrow of strongman Hosni Mubarak, Washington has stepped aside while the Egyptian military has ousted the country’s first democratically elected president, Mohammed Morsi.
On Wednesday, President Obama issued a carefully worded statement, calling on Egypt’s generals to quickly restore democratic rule. But Obama seemed to express tacit support for the hundreds of thousands of protesters who had taken to the streets of Egypt in recent days, demanding that the Islamist dominated government resign.
“No transition to democracy comes without difficulty, but in the end it must stay true to the will of the people,” the US president said in his press release. “An honest, capable and representative government is what ordinary Egyptians want and deserve.”
While State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters on Wednesday that the US “was not taking sides” in Egypt’s latest political crisis, she also faulted President Morsi for not proposing steps to address the opposition’s concerns.
“You’re seeing a clash between values and interest here,” Tarek Radwan, an Egypt expert with the Atlantic Council, told DW. “Naturally, [US] values say a stable democracy is good in the long term. Our interests, however, say a military coup is in fact a good thing here.”