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Cablegate: Egyptian Media Coverage of Assistant Secretary

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS CAIRO 005472

SIPDIS

PA FOR J. ADAM ERELI; NEA/PD FOR FRANK FINVER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV KPAO KMDR OPRC UK IZ IS EG OVIP
SUBJECT: EGYPTIAN MEDIA COVERAGE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY
DAVID WELCH'S VISIT

REF: CAIRO 5429

1. Assistant Secretary David Welch's statements following
a meeting with Egyptian Foreign Minister Aboul Gheit
received straightforward, lengthy inside-page coverage in
almost all Egyptian dailies on July 17, 2005. The coverage
stressed Egyptian-U.S. cooperation on the Israeli
withdrawal from Gaza, as well as Welch's statements on the
dispatch of ambassadors to Iraq and U.S. consideration of
Hamas as a terrorist organization. End summary.

2. Leading pro-government Al Ahram's (circulation:
750,000) coverage was headlined, "Welch says after meeting
with the FM: Egypt and the U.S. work strongly on the
implementation of the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza. Aboul
Gheit calls for no escalation in the Palestinian
territories and commitment to the Sharm understandings."
The story quoted the entire press conference where Welch
emphasized, "there are fifty countries represented in Iraq
and terrorism is attacking everyone." He was also quoted
as denying any U.S. intention to have contacts with Hamas
"because it is a terrorist organization."

3. Pro-government Al Akhbar's (circulation: 750,000)
headline read, "Aboul Gheit discusses regional developments
with U.S. Assistant Secretary. There is need for a clear
vision on the post-withdrawal from Gaza."

4. Small circulation pro-government Al Gomhouriya's
(circulation: 200,000) report was entitled, "Welch says
after meeting with Aboul Gheit: Egyptian-U.S. relations
are strategic and they work to achieve stability in the
region. FM (Abul Gheit) conveyed to the American envoy
Cairo's concern over the Israeli-Palestinian clashes."

5. Leading opposition Al Wafd's front-page coverage
stressed, "Welch refuses to explain the reasons for having
an office for the National Democratic Institute in Egypt."

6. Independent daily Nahdet Masr (circulation: 20,000)
brief, front-page coverage carried the headline, "Welch
says no contacts with Hamas. He reiterated his accusations
of terrorism against it."

Corbin

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