The United States sent a diplomat to Egypt to meet President Hosni Mubarak on Monday after mass protests.
Former U.S. ambassador to Egypt Frank Wisner was on the ground in Cairo as U.S. officials sought to bring pressure on Mubarak without openly calling on him to step down.
State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Wisner "has the opportunity to gain a perspective on what they're thinking and what their ideas are in terms of process that we've clearly called for."
Still walking a diplomatic tightrope, the White House insisted President Barack Obama was not calling on Mubarak to step down after a week of street protests against him and said it was up to the Egyptian people to decide their own future.
Still, the United States has started to think about the long-term implications of the protests and scenarios for what might come next, according to an analyst who was present at a White House meeting on the subject.
Obama has voiced concerns to aides that any U.S. effort to insert itself into the situation could backfire.
Egypt's Suez Canal allows the transport of crude oil and liquefied natural gas bound for the U.S. and other countries.
National security aides at the White House were monitoring the effect the unrest and uncertainty in Egypt may have on oil and financial markets. Gibbs said no disruptions had been reported in the Suez Canal.
ReutersLast Mod: 01 Şubat 2011, 14:16