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Sen. Kerry: Mubarak Must Step Aside Gracefully

This article is more than 12 years old.

To stem the ongoing unrest, Sen. John Kerry said Tuesday that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak should declare that neither he, nor his son, will run in Egyptian elections expected later this year.

Kerry, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, also expressed hope that Mubarak would assist in a transitional process for the Egyptian people.

"He should not just declare that he is not going to run but he should work with the civil society ... as well as with the army to put in place a caretaker government for a transitional process with elections in the very near term," Kerry said on NPR's Morning Edition.

Kerry also warned against anyone but the Egyptian people taking too big of a role in what a new leadership might look like.

"The U.S. can’t preach democracy and talk about people’s right to make their choices and then stand in the way of it and think that we are going to somehow orchestrate the post-event architecture so sufficiently that we guarantee who comes in," the senator said. "I mean, that’s not democracy and so we have to take some element of risk here."

Despite this, Kerry feels that Egypt should still be guided toward stability.

"We need to try to make sure that this is an orderly process so that moderate voices can be heard, so that an election takes place and hopefully Egypt can be guided to a place of continued moderation, continued responsibility and in fact become a critical part of an ongoing peace process which is now even more essential than ever to the Middle East’s stability and future."

This program aired on February 1, 2011. The audio for this program is not available.


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