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Clinton says to respect Egyptian people’s will in referendum

CAIRO, March 15 (Xinhua) — U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said here Tuesday that the United States supports Egypt’s future chosen by its people.

Clinton, the highest-ranking U.S. official to visit Egypt since former President Hosni Mubarak’s resignation last month, said her country supported Egyptians determining their own future, adding that the results of the referendum on constitutional amendment is up to the Egyptian people.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton attends a news conference with Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil el- Arabi in Cairo March 15, 2011. (Xinhua/Reuters)

“We don’t have any special idea about Egypt’s situation except a message to support what people decide to do,” Clinton said in a joint press conference with Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil el- Arabi.

El-Arabi said Egypt will keep the good relationship with the U. S. which has lasted for years.

Clinton said her discussion with el-Arabi also focused on supporting Egypt’s economic development, especially the private sector.

“We committed 90 million U.S. dollars for near-term immediate economic assistance,” Clinton said, adding that she had asked the U.S. congress to establish an Egypt-U.S. enterprise fund.

Egyptian Prime Minister Essam Sharaf will receive Clinton on Wednesday to discuss the U.S. financial support offered to Egypt and ways to boost strategic ties between Cairo and Washington, according to Egypt’s official news agency.

Clinton arrived here on the first leg of a tour which includes Tunisia after an overnight stop in Paris for talks on Libya.

Before leaving Paris, she met with the representatives of the Libyan rebel Transitional National Council, which has been calling for a non-fly zone in Libya and airstrikes against Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

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