Blinken: Human rights central to US-Egypt relationship

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken discussed a range of issues with Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, including partnership and human rights, the State Department said Tuesday, Anadolu Agency reported.

The two diplomats discussed a "strong strategic partnership" between the two nations on security and counterterrorism cooperation over the telephone, said agency spokesperson Ned Price in a statement.

"The Secretary raised concerns over human rights, which he emphasized would be central to the US-Egypt bilateral relationship, and Egypt's potential procurement of Su-35 fighter aircraft from Russia," said the statement.

READ: Egypt targeting opposition members of parliament, rights group says

Blinken and Shoukry also talked about supporting UN-facilitated peace negotiations in Libya, the Middle East peace process and counterterrorism cooperation in the Sinai.

Blinken later said on Twitter that he looks forward to "strengthening our historic partnership" with Cairo.

"Our shared security interests must align with respect for democracy and human rights, including the importance of a strong civil society," Blinken tweeted.