21 May 2009

Egyptian leader cancels US visit

9:49 am on 21 May 2009

President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt has cancelled a trip to meet President Barack Obama in Washington next week.

White House and Egyptian officials said on Wednesday he is grieving over the death of his grandson.

Mohamed Alaa Hosni Mubarak, 12, died on Monday evening in Cairo. His funeral was held on Tuesday.

Ambassador Sameh Shoukry said Egypt hopes to reschedule the visit.

Mr Obama is due to visit Egypt next month.

Mubarak, 81, won a fifth six-year term as president in 2005. He has been head of state since the assassination of Anwar Sadat in 1981.