Military on Cairo streets
Military on Cairo streets Reuters

Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr on Thursday told his American counterpart John Kerry that the overthrow of President Mohammed Morsi had not been a military coup.

"The American side is a strategic partner for Egypt and the welfare of the Egypt is important to them," said Amr in a telephone call with Kerry, one day after Egypt's army ousted and detained Morsi, after a week of deadly clashes and mass protests calling for him to go.

"I hope that they read the situation in the right way, that this is not a military coup in any way. This was actually the overwhelming will of the people," Amr said. A military overthrow of an elected leader entails economic sanctions and could result in the U.S. cutting off its aid to Egypt.

Amr said that Kerry had assured him that Egypt was a strategic ally whose stability was important.

He added that the move was driven by the massive popular demonstrations against Morsi which had persuaded the armed forces to intervene and suspend the constitution.

"There is no role, no political role whatsoever, for the military ... This is the total opposite of a military coup," said Amr, who resigned from his position amid the protests earlier this week but who remains in office until a new interim government is formed.

Earlier on Thursday, Chief Justice Adly el-Mansour was officially sworn into office as the new transitional President of Egypt.

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