- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 4, 2013

As a new interim president of Egypt was sworn in Thursday, President Obama met with his national security team at the White House to review the situation and to warn Egypt’s interim government away from retaliation against its former Muslim Brotherhood leaders.

A spokeswoman for the National Security Council said Mr. Obama met in the Situation Room with advisers while various administration officials spoke on the phone with officials in Egypt and other heads of state across the Middle East.

The discussions conveyed “the importance of a quick and responsible return of full authority to a democratically elected civilian government as soon as possible; a transparent political process that is inclusive of all parties and groups; avoiding any arbitrary arrests of President [Mohammed] Morsi and his supporters; and the responsibility of all groups and parties to avoid violence,” said NSC spokeswoman Bernadette Meehan.

The White House said Secretary of State John F. Kerry spoke with Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr, who told his American opposite number that the ouster of Mr. Morsi was not a military coup.

Mr. Kerry also spoke with Egyptian Constitution Party President Mohamed ElBaradei, Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and others.

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel spoke with his counterparts in Egypt and Israel, and National Security Adviser Susan E. Rice conferred with Israeli National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror.

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