US urges for change in Egypt

Updated: 2011-02-01 08:38


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WASHINGTON - The White House on Monday urged the Egyptian government to take actions for change, but it refused to say whether the United States supports Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to continue to rule the Middle East country.

"This is not about appointments, it's about actions," said White House spokesman Robert Gibbs, referring to Mubarak's move to reshuffle his cabinet and appoint a vice president for the first time in 30 years.

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There is "more work to be done", and the way Egypt "looks and operates must change," he said.

But he also said the United States is not "picking between those on the street and those in the government," insisting it is not up to the United States, but "the Egyptian people", to determine the outcome of the protests.

Gibbs called for restraint in the general strike and the "one- million-man march" scheduled for Tuesday, which is aimed to mark one week of the protests that started on January 25.

The State Department spokesman Philip Crowley said Monday that former US ambassador to Egypt Frank Wisner is now in Cairo and will meet Egyptian leaders to "reinforce" the call by the United States. Crowley also urged Egypt to revoke its emergency law.

In the latest development, Egypt's newly-appointed Vice President Omar Suleiman announced on Monday that President Mubarak has asked him to start dialogue immediately with all political parties, including on constitutional and legislative reforms.

Massive anti-government protests have been going on for almost a week across Egypt, with more than 100 people dead and thousands injured.



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