Protests Flare as Kerry Visits Egypt, Meets Opposition Figures

March 2, 2013 . By

Major protests in Mansoura were dispersed by police using tear gas—at least one person was killed, and several people were injured. This violence marks a visit by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to Egypt.

Secretary Kerry first met with certain opposition leaders, and was due to meet with President Muhammad Morsi on Sunday. Kerry’s meeting primarily focused on economic issues, including long-pending arrangements for an IMF loan package. He stated that “it is paramount, essential, urgent, that the Egyptian economy gets stronger, and gets back on its feet, and it’s very clear that there is a circle of connections in how that can happen.” Kerry also encouraged all sides of the political tensions in Egypt to find common ground in order to end the violence and impunity sweeping the nation.

Kerry did not meet with Mohammed ElBaradei or Hamdeen Sabahi, though, who rejected invitations to meet with him during his time in Cairo. He later spoke with ElBaradei by phone.