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Egypt’s ousted Morsi ‘well’, has access to news: Ashton

Egypt’s ousted president Mohamed Morsi is ‘well’ and has access to news, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said on Tuesday after meeting him at an undisclosed location.

‘Morsi is well,’ she told reporters, adding that he had access to newspapers and television, and describing their talks as ‘friendly, open and very frank.’

Ashton held two hours of talks with Morsi in the early hours of Tuesday, with sources telling media she left Cairo on a military helicopter.  She declined to say where Morsi was being held or to characterise his comments to her.
‘I’m not going to put words in his mouth,’ she said.
‘We had a friendly, open and very frank discussion,’ she added. ‘We talked in-depth.’

Ashton arrived in Cairo on Sunday night for an intensive schedule of meetings with Egyptian government officials and opposition representatives.
Her visit came in the wake of the deaths of 82 people at a pro-Morsi rally in Cairo on Saturday morning.

She has urged an end to the bloodshed and a political transition that would include the Muslim Brotherhood organisation from which Morsi hails.
But she said on Tuesday that she was not in Egypt to push either side to take particular actions or to present an initiative.

‘I’m not here to ask people to do things,’ she said, adding that she would be looking to find ‘common ground’ between the sides.
‘I don’t come here to say somebody should do this, somebody should do that, this is your country,’ she said. ‘The solutions are for the Egyptian people.’  
Carl Schreck

Carl Schreck

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