WRAPUP 1-Suez cancellation lifts Egypt diplomatic strain

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WRAPUP 1-Suez cancellation lifts Egypt diplomatic strain

Post by Strawberry on Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:38 am

* Suez cancellation, one less headache for military

* Life far from normal with tanks in Cairo, labour unrest

* "Victory March" on Friday raises questions

* Constitutional committee meets


CAIRO, Feb 17 (Reuters) - The cancellation of plans by two Iranian naval vessels to pass through the strategic Suez Canal removed on Thursday a potential foreign policy headache for the new military rulers struggling to get Egypt back on its feet.

The Higher Military Council that took over after the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak, was under pressure on Thursday from pro-democracy activists who want the immediate release of political prisoners and the lifting of emergency rule.

Its top priorities after suspending the constitution are restoring law and order and reviving the economy, which was damaged by the 18-day revolution, but the issue of the Iranian warships had threatened to become a distraction.

Israel's foreign minister had called the proposed passage a "provocation", and its go-ahead could have put Egypt, a key ally of the United States which has a peace treaty with Israel, in an awkward diplomatic position.

For more on this interesting article please goto:

http://af.reuters.com/article/egyptNews/idAFLDE71G0A820110217
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