Obama welcomes Egypt's pledge to maintain international treaties
Comment by U.S. president comes as Egypt's ruling military indicated it would respect the country's international obligations, which include its peace treaty with Israel.
U.S. President Barack Obama welcomed a statement by Egypt's ruling military pledging its continued support of treaties with its international allies, including its peace treaty with Israel, a White House statement said on Saturday.
Earlier Saturday, Egypt's army reassured its international allies that there would be no break in its peace deal with Israel following the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, with a spokesman saying that the country Armed Forces Supreme Council was "commitment to all Egypt's international treaties."
In phone conversations later Saturday with world leaders, such as U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, King Abdullah II of Jordan, and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Obama reportedly "welcomed the historic change that has been made by the Egyptian people," reaffirming his "admiration for their efforts."
In reference to an earlier statement by Egypt's Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, Obama said he "welcomed the announcement" according to which Egypt was "committed to a democratic civilian transition, and that it would "stand by Egypt’s international obligations."
The U.S. president also "emphasized his conviction that democracy will bring more – not less – stability to the region," adding that Washington was committed to "provide the support that is necessary and requested by the Egyptian people to pursue a credible and orderly transition to democracy."
In his conversations with the various leaders, the White House statement said, Obama " reaffirmed the United States’ strong commitment to supporting a more peaceful and prosperous Middle East in close consultation with all our regional partners."
Obama's comments came after, in a reaction to the statement by the Egyptian military, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that the "longstanding peace treaty between Israel and Egypt has greatly contributed to both countries and is the cornerstone for peace and stability in the entire Middle East."
Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman also referred to the Armed Forces Supreme Council announcement, saying that Israel was not interested "in Egypt's internal affairs," adding that the only thing Israel wanted was that "regional stability be preserved and the peace treaty respected."
Israel has been deeply concerned that Egypt's turmoil could threaten the 1979 peace accord signed between the two countries.
The United States, Egypt's top ally, is also eager to ensure the accord remains in place. The military strongly supports the accord, not in small part because it guarantees U.S. aid for the armed forces, currently running at $1.3 billion a year.