Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton addressed the situation in Egypt today during interviews with ABC, CBS, CNN, FOX and NBC. Secretary Clinton said:
"...For 30 years, the United States, through Republican and Democratic administrations, has been urging the Mubarak government to take certain steps. In fact, we've been urging that a vice president be appointed for decades, and that finally has happened. But there"s a long way to go...and our hope is that we do not see violence; we see a dialogue opening that reflects the full diversity of Egyptian civil society, that has the concrete steps for democratic and economic reform that President Mubarak himself said that he was going to pursue, and that we see the respect for human rights for Egyptian people and the kind of progress that will lead to a much more open, political, and economic set of opportunities for the Egyptian people."
The Secretary continued, "...We want to see an orderly transition so that no one fills a void, that there not be a void -- that there be a well thought out plan that will bring about a democratic, participatory government. And I also believe strongly that this is in Egypt's long-term interests, it's in the interests of the partnership that the United States has with Egypt. So that is what we are attempting to promote and support, because clearly, what we don't want is chaos. I don't think the Egyptian people want that. They want their grievances to be addressed. We also don't want to see some takeover that would lead not to democracy, but to oppression and the end of the aspirations of the Egyptian people.
"So this is an intensely complex situation. It does not lend itself to quick yes-or-no, easy answers, but instead, I think the path that President Obama has charted, that we are pursuing, that calls for no violence, that supports the aspirations and human rights of the Egyptian people, that stands behind concrete steps toward democratic and economic reform is the right path for all of us to be on."
Secretary Clinton also spoke about consular services for Americans who are in Egypt. The Secretary said, "...We are following the conditions for American citizens extremely closely. This is one of my highest responsibilities, Chris. And we have authorized voluntary departure, which means that we will assist American citizens to leave Egypt. We have warned that there should not be any nonessential travel to Egypt. Thankfully, right now, there are no reports of Americans killed or injured. Again, I thank the Egyptian army for the support and security that they have provided. But we are watching it closely and we are assisting Americans who wish to leave."
U.S. citizens wishing to depart Egypt via U.S. government, chartered transportation should contact us at EgyptEmergencyUSC@state.gov or 1-202-501-4444. You can find up-to-date consular information for Egypt on travel.state.gov.
Please click on the following links for the full transcripts of Secretary Clinton's interviews:
Interview With Christiane Amanpour of ABC's This WeekInterview With Bob Schieffer of CBS's Face The NationInterview With Candy Crowley of CNN's State Of The UnionInterview With Chris Wallace of Fox News SundayInterview With David Gregory of NBC's Meet The Press