July 15 - The first senior U.S. official to visit Egypt since the army toppled its elected president was snubbed by both Islamists and their opponents. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
Deputy Secretary of State William Burns arrived in a divided Cairo Monday where both sides are furious at the United States, which supports Egypt with $1.5 billion a year in mostly military aid. While Burns met with the interim leadership, both the Islamist Nour Party and the Tamarud anti-Mursi protest movement turned down invitations to meet him. (SOUNDBITE) (English) DEPUTY U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE, WILLIAM BURNS, SAYING: "Only Egyptians can determine their future. I did not come with American solutions. Nor did I come to lecture anyone." Washington, never comfortable with the rise of Mursi's Muslim Brotherhood, has so far refused to say whether it views Mursi's removal as a coup, which would require it to halt aid. Burns focused on opportunities. (SOUNDBITE) (English) DEPUTY U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE, WILLIAM BURNS, SAYING: "Despite our concerns about the developments of the last two weeks we believe that the ongoing transition is another opportunity following the January 25th revolution to create a democratic state that protects human rights and the rule of law. And while millions welcomed the military ouster of Mursi -- his supporters are not going quietly. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) PRO-MURSI PROTESTER, SAUD ABDUL JAWAD, SAYING: "We do not kneel for anyone, and we do not respond to pressure from anyone. And of course the will of the people is more important than any visit or any representative and more important than any state. Of course I reject the visit of the American representative because they are the reason for the military coup." The Muslim Brotherhood declined to meet with Burns until several conditions were met, including Mursi's restoration to the presidency.