United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was to meet with Egypt’s new president, Mohammed Morsi, in Cairo Saturday as part of a two-day visit to the country. She was then heading to Israel.
The secretary was set to seek assurances from Morsi on foreign and domestic policy issues. She was expected to discuss Middle East stability and the need to preserve the Israeli-Egyptian peace agreement. Other issues on the agenda were religious freedom, democratic transition, and minority rights.
Clinton was also to meet with civic, business, and religious leaders and travel to Alexandria.
Morsi, elected in June, is Egypt’s first freely-elected president. He is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party.
Morsi is in the midst of a political struggle with the military council, which effectively ran the country after the fall of Hosni Mubarak and dissolved the Islamist-dominated parliament. On Wednesday, Morsi preliminarily told the Constitutional Court he would respect the decision to disperse parliament
Clinton’s visit to Cairo comes on the heels of Morsi’s trip to Saudi Arabia, where he met with King Abdullah, and his hosting of Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki.
The EU’s foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton is also set visit Cairo and meet with Morsi, on Wednesday. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is planning a visit to Cairo next week too in order to discuss the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, among other topics.