Nightly News   |  November 03, 2013

Violence could erupt during Morsi trial

Secretary of State John Kerry visited Egypt amid worries violence could break out at the former president Mohammed Morsi’s trial.

Share This:

This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> overseas they're bracing for the possibility of more violence in egypt as the ousted president of that country goes on trial tomorrow on charges of inciting murder during protests last year. at the same time, secretary of state john kerry was in cairo today engaging in a bit of a delicate diplomatic dance with the military government that removed morsi from power. more from nbc's chief foreign correspondent, richard engel .

>> reporter: egypt is on alert. 20,000 soldiers and police deployed in cairo before just a minute's islamist and democratically elected president mohammed morsi goes on trial tomorrow. there could be violence. his supporters from the muslim brotherhood have been holding small weekly rallies in solidarity. morsi himself hasn't been seen in public since the military removed him by force in july. the last time morsi's followers gathered in large numbers, they were gunned down. hundreds killed. this is an awkward time for a visit by the u.s. secretary of state , kerry in cairo today backing egypt 's military, never once mentioning morsi. expressing confidence, egypt 's generals will restore democracy eventually.

>> and i think it is important for all of us until proven otherwise to accept that this is the track egypt is on and to work to help it to be able to achieve that.

>> reporter: but democracy isn't the prevailing wind in cairo these days. instead, there is a government sponsored cheering campaign for the general who kicked morsi out of office. the u.s. faces tough choices in egypt . president obama has supported democracy in this country since the revolution here in tahrir square. now the u.s. can either stick with principle or embrace the generals calling the shots. today it seems washington is leaning toward the generals.

>> as president obama has said, we are committed to work with and we will continue our cooperation with the interim government .

>> reporter: democracy in egypt is on hold and washington says as long as it is on the horizon, it can live with that. richard engel , nbc news. cairo .