US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said that the United States was committed to the US-Egypt defense relationship and wanted to continue working with Egypt to support a stable inclusive political transition, said a statement by Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby.
In a phone call with Egypt's Defense Minister Abdel-Fatah El-Sisi, Hagel briefed his counterpart on the outcome of his recent visit to the Middle East.
Hagel told Sisi that he encouraged regional partners to continue playing a role in improving Egypt's economy and to play a constructive role in supporting Egypt's transition.
The United States looks forward to seeing Egypt's constitutional referendum held in mid-January, Hagel said.
Both ministers discussed the importance of a transparent process, in which the freedom of expression is protected for all citizens during the referendum period, regardless of whether they support or oppose the constitution.
Hagel and Sisi agreed to continue to talk frequently to continue to engage on these important issues in the US-Egypt relationship.