WASHINGTON, D.C. –Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) released the following statement after President Mubarak announced that he will not run for reelection:
“This was an important announcement by President Mubarak to bring his presidency to an end and pledge that free and fair elections will be held. I believe that President Mubarak should now work with the military and civil society to establish an interim caretaker government.
“It remains to be seen whether this is enough to satisfy the demands of the Egyptian people for change. We arrived at this point because millions of Egyptians spoke with one voice and exercised fundamental rights we Americans hold dear. They made it clear the future they want is one of greater democracy and greater economic opportunity. Now, that future belongs to them to shape. The Egyptian people are writing the next chapter of Egyptian history.
“Much work remains to be done to turn this auspicious moment into lasting peace and prosperity. Egyptians must now prepare for elections and achieve a peaceful transition of power. The military must continue to show the restraint it has so admirably exercised these past days. And opposition leaders must come together to develop a process that will ensure that all of Egypt’s voices are heard.
“As friends of the Egyptian people, there is much that the United States can do as well. Egypt has been a close ally of the United States for many years, and it is my fervent hope that our relationship can grow stronger as the Egyptian people take control of their destiny.”