Egypt Live Blog
US Secretary of Defense says Egypt's military needs to move forward with its political transition.
Leon Panetta, the US Secretary of Defense called Egypt's military ruler Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi to emphasize the need to move forward with Egypt's political transition, the Pentagon said.
Panetta called Tantawi "to discuss current events in Egypt, including the recent Supreme Constitutional Court ruling on the Egyptian parliament," the Pentagon said in a statement.
"Secretary Panetta highlighted the need to move forward expeditiously with Egypt's political transition, including conducting new legislative elections as soon as possible.
Tantawi in turn "reiterated" the commitment of the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces "to hold free and fair presidential elections as scheduled and to transfer power to a democratically elected government by July 1," the statement read.
The two men "agreed on the importance of the US-Egyptian strategic relationship," while Panetta underscored "the need to ensure a full and peaceful transition to democracy."
Panetta also said "he looks forward to working with Egypt's newly elected government to advance our mutual interests," the statement read.