Kerry Says Mubarak Must Respond To His People

U.S. Sen. John Kerry said Saturday that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak must respond to the concerns of his people and their issues, days after anti-government protests rocked the country.

"The key here is for President Mubarak to respond to the needs of his people in a way that is more directly connected to their frustrations," the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee told The Associated Press Saturday on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum.

"I think he's got to speak more to the real issues that people feel," Kerry added. "Dismissing the government doesn't speak to some of those challenges."

Asked if Mubarak should step down in a bid to calm the growing protests, Kerry said it was not his place to say.
"I think you first have to sit down and have a discussion with him on the future of Egypt," Kerry told the AP. "I'm not going to call for that in a newspaper, but we've got to have those conversations."

Kerry's comments came just minutes after Egyptian state television reported that the Cabinet of Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif had resigned on Mubarak's orders.

Former U.N. secretary-general Kofi Annan, also present at the meeting, said the demands of change being sought by the protesters likely cannot be stopped.

"It is obvious that people are demanding change and reform, and this demand for change, I don't think it will be stoppable," he said.

Danish Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rassmusen said that EU ministers will meet on Monday to discuss Egypt.

This program aired on January 29, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.


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