Egyptian official: US aid cut a mistake

Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy said President Obama's decision to suspend military aid to the country will not end the violence and political turmoil wracked the nation in recent months. 

The decades-long military relationship between Washington and Cairo "led the U.S. to wrongly believe that Egypt would always follow its policies and aims," Fahmy said Wednesday.  

"We are right now in a delicate phase reflecting turmoil in the relationship and whoever says otherwise is not speaking honestly," Fahmy said in an interview with state-controlled media. 

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The White House shelved multibillion-dollar sales of F-16 fighter jets, M1 Abrams tanks and Apache attack helicopters to Cairo as part of the administration's "recalibration" of U.S.-Egyptian ties. 

The decision "sends a pretty clear message" to the Egyptian interim government that it must end its violent crackdown on opposition forces and end the political turmoil in the country, a White House official said shortly after the suspension of the weapon sales. 

In August, Obama canceled deliveries of F-16 fighters to the North African country, as well as a large-scale military exercise between American and Egyptian forces, known as Bright Star, in response to the violence. 

That said, the Obama administration could be forced to pay out millions of dollars in storage costs and contractor fees tied to those suspended military programs. 

"There are costs associated with the suspension of some programs," State Department spokeswoman Margie Harf said. 

"If there's physical equipment we do not deliver, we will evaluate each situation on a case-by-case basis to determine the most appropriate disposition of any equipment," she told reporters at the State Department on Oct. 9. 

Egyptian troops flushed out supporters of former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi from their camps in Cairo and elsewhere during rolling clashes in Cairo and elsewhere in August. 

The clashes between pro-Morsi protesters and military troops ended with more than 500 killed in the ensuing melees. 

Morsi, the nation's first freely elected president, and his Muslim Brotherhood government were forced out of power on July 3.