Win tickets to see the smash hit musical Mamma Mia at the Roanoke Civic Center. Two winners will each receive four tickets!
The senator, back from a fact-finding trip, said the situation is troubling, but rash action could backfire.
Tuesday, July 9, 2013
Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., on Monday cautioned against “shooting from the hip” and discontinuing economic and military aid after the uprising in Egypt that ousted Mohamed Morsi, the country’s Islamist president, with the help of the military.
“We certainly heard from regional allies that they believe that would be a mistake, they made that loud and clear to us,” Kaine said Monday upon returning from a weeklong trip to Afghanistan, Jordan, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and Germany.
The allies — primarily Jordan and Turkey — view the activity in Egypt as “a legitimate and very forceful popular uprising, not a military coup,” Kaine said. “We need to do our due diligence and make sure that this is in fact the case.”
But Kaine also expressed concern about reports that the Egyptian army fired on hundreds of Morsi’s supporters Monday, killing at least 51 and wounding 300 of them at a demonstration outside the facility where the ousted president is believed to be detained.
“This is probably the most alarming thing that has happened over the course of the last week,” Kaine said. “The Egyptian military plays an incredible role to the extent that they serve as a stabilizing force.”
As part of that stabilizing force, Kaine continued, the Egyptian army is responsible for leading through a transition that protects the rights of all Egyptians, “especially peaceful protesters.”
The escalation of the nearly week-old crisis “will certainly make us dig in further and determine the circumstances,” Kaine said.
During the trip, on which Kaine was one of several senators, Kaine spoke to U.S. and foreign military leaders, service members, diplomats and foreign state officials.
On Syria, Kaine said that there universally is grave concern about human rights violations by Bashar Assad’s government, but also concern with the character of some of the opposition, “which is increasingly being dominated by forces that are allied with al-Qaida.”
The United States should provide appropriate aid to the opposition forces, Kaine said, but these forces need “to be encouraged and mandated to be a broad opposition that includes all elements of Syrian society, and that we need to very carefully vet who we support and the kinds of support that we provide.”
In meeting with leaders of the UAE, Kaine said Iran was the primary focus, given its close proximity.
“We discussed their strong belief that the U.S. and other nations continue to keep sanctions pressure on and do other things necessary to make sure they [Iran] do not move beyond use of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes and move to the point where they are enriching uranium for nuclear weaponry,” Kaine said.
In Afghanistan, where the delegation spent the Fourth of July, talks focused on a plan for a U.S. role after 2014 “that would be consistent with” training Afghan National Security Forces and an “advice role, but that would not be direct U.S. combat involvement,” Kaine said.
Weather JournalStorm track isn't very snowy for us