NBC NEWS – CAIRO – President Barack Obama strongly condemned Egypt’s interim government Thursday, saying the United States was canceling a planned joint military operation in protest over violent clashes that left at least 525 dead.
He also called on Egypt’s army-backed interim government to cancel the month-long state of emergency it imposed after Wednesday’s clashes, and to respect the rights of minorities.
“The cycle of violence needs to stop,” he said in Martha’s Vineyard where he is on a working vacation.
Obama said Operation Bright Star – a joint biennial military exercise that had been due to take place in the Sinai region next month – would not now happen. It followed the decision last month to halt a planned delivery of F-16 fighter jets.
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