U.S. Sen. Bob Corker: 'Recalibrate' aid to Egypt

U.S. Sen. Bob Corker: 'Recalibrate' aid to Egypt

August 19th, 2013 by Staff Report in Local Regional News

U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., speaks to reporters during an editorial board meeting in the Chattanooga Times Free Press newsroom in this file photo.

U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., speaks to reporters...

Photo by Dan Henry /Times Free Press.

U.S. Sen. Bob Corker on Sunday called for the United States to "recalibrate" future foreign aid to Egypt, consistent with America's national interests.

The Tennessee Republican, ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, spoke on ABC's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos" just after returning from a week-long trip to the Middle East.

"We need to keep the lines of communication open," Corker said. Overall, he said, America should "continue to have an aid relationship with Egypt" but in a fashion tied to U.S. interests.

He said Egypt must cooperate to address the threat posed by extremists in the Sinai Peninsula and noted the importance to the American economy of access to the Suez Canal. And, while this year's U.S. aid to Egypt already is committed, he foresees a suspension of aid in the future that should allow America "to recalibrate and look at what is our national interest."

After the trip to Turkey, Jordan and Iraq, Corker said the spread of sectarian violence in the Middle East is preventing the U.S. from focusing on its national interests.