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State Department says Egypt's talks not broad enough

From Jill Dougherty, CNN Foreign Affairs Correspondent
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When should Mubarak go?
  • "Major figures" are being left out, U.S. official says
  • Some Egyptian protest leaders have boycotted talks
  • Egyptian vice president met with some opposition figures Sunday

Washington (CNN) -- The State Department took a more critical stance Monday on negotiations that Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman is holding with members of the opposition.

"Our concern is that the ... discussions that are happening are not broad-based enough," State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said.

Crowley refused to name names but said there are people in Egypt, including "major figures in Egyptian society" who have "not been invited in," adding "this needs to be inclusive."

Suleiman held what his office called an "ongoing reform dialogue" Sunday with a number of representatives from various opposition groups.

However, some protest leaders have boycotted the meetings, claiming the government is not serious about working toward real change and, instead, is trying to split the opposition by talking with some groups and not others.

Investigating the killing of a protester

Previously, the State Department welcomed Suleiman's plans to meet with the opposition but Monday Crowley said the demonstrators should "test" the government's real motives.

"There are people who are holding the transition process at arm's length because they don't believe it's going to be credible," he said, "and our advice would be, you know, test the seriousness of the government and those who are participating to see if it can deliver, and from this people have confidence that change is actually going to occur."

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