Expressing concern over Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi’s decision to assume sweeping powers through a decree, the White House today said that the Egyptian Government ought to reflect the will of the people.

“We have some concerns about the decisions and declarations that were announced on November 22, and those concerns reflect the concerns that many Egyptians have and that others in the international community have, because we’ve approached this transformation in Egypt with basic principles in mind, and that is we support democracy,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters.

“We believe that a Government in Egypt ought to reflect the will of the people and we believe that the Egyptian people have to decide what that Government will look like,” Carney said.

However, the White House praised the role of the Egyptian President in the recent Gaza ceasefire between Israel and the Hamas.

“The President’s interest was in working with the parties involved to help bring about a ceasefire, and President Morsi played a very constructive role in achieving that,” Carney said.

“We have expressed and raised concerns about the decisions and declarations of November 22, and we’ll continue to do that as appropriate,” he said.

“Our interest in the development and transition to democracy in Egypt is one that reflects what the Egyptian people demanded through the revolution and continue to demand, which is a government that reflects the will of the people. We will continue to work towards that goal because it reflects what the Egyptian people want,” the White House Press Secretary said.

Carney said one of the aspirations of the Egyptian revolution was to ensure that power would not be overly concentrated in the hands of any one person or institution.

“The US supports Egypt’s democratic transition, consistent with Egypt’s international commitments and the democratic principles that Egyptians fought so hard to secure. Democracy depends on strong institutions and the important checks and balances that provide accountability,” he noted.

(This article was published on November 27, 2012)
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