World Bulletin/News Desk
The Egyptian Foreign Ministry on Friday has denied any links between a planned visit by US Secretary of State John Kerry and the trial of ousted president Mohamed Morsi.
Kerry's visit to Egypt "is part of a Middle East tour that will cover a number of countries in the region," ministry spokesman Badr Abdel-Ati said.
Kerry is set to arrive in Cairo on Sunday for his first visit to Egypt since Morsi's ouster by the powerful military four months ago.
Airport officials were notified that Kerry would touch down on Sunday for an hour-long visit during which he was slated to meet with a handful of Egyptian officials, sources at Cairo International Airport told Anadolu Agency.
A US State Department delegation has already arrived in Egypt to prepare for Kerry's visit, the sources said.
Washington's top diplomat is scheduled to embark on a Middle East tour from November 3 to 11. Cairo, however, had not been included as a stop on the planned tour.
But Kerry said this week that he might visit Cairo for meetings with Egyptian officials.
"One of the meetings that I insisted on having was that we make sure we meet with a cross-section of civil society," Kerry said Tuesday.
The visit will come only one day before Morsi, Egypt's first freely elected president, is due to appear in a court to face "incitement to violence" charges, allegations supporters say are politically motivated.
Relations between Egypt and the United States soured further after Washington suspended some military aid to Egypt last month in a move to signal its dissatisfaction with the slow pace of democratic reform following Morsi's overthrow.Last Mod: 02 Kasım 2013, 11:34