U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, speaks with Egypt's Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, before a meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, Aug. 2, 2015. (Brendan Smialowski/Pool Photo via AP)
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The United States and Egypt on Sunday resumed formal security talks that were suspended six years ago amid the political unrest that swept the country in the wake of the Arab Spring.Two days after the U.S. delivered eight F-16 warplanes to Egypt as part of a military support package, Secretary of State John Kerry restarted the dialogue with Egyptian officials in Cairo.Kerry acknowledged stress in the U.S.-Egypt relationship over human rights.Shoukry said Egypt is committed to improving its human rights conditions but noted that all countries, even mature democracies, have imperfect rights records.In advance of his trip, Kerry met Thursday in Washington with Egyptian-American Mohammad Soltan, who had been sentenced to life in prison in Egypt for financing an anti-government sit-in and spreading "false news". Broadening U.S.-Egyptian trade and economic ties also was also on the table during Kerry's visit, which comes just days before Egypt inaugurates a second, parallel waterway to allow two-way traffic on the Suez Canal. Kerry congratulated Egypt on the "major" Suez project ahead of its opening on Thursday, and he announced that U.S.-Egypt trade and investment consultations will resume in the fall.
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