Egyptian president Morsi arrives in Berlin today amid huge opposition to the visit. There's been bloodshed in Egypt since he introduced sweeping powers in November. But Germany says communication must be kept open.
German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle has called for a return to democracy during a trip to Cairo, but did not directly condemn the coup. Berlin's influence in Egypt remains limited.
The interim, military-backed government in Egypt has announced significant policy changes. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called for the release of the ousted president.
Egyptian police have cleared the Muslim Brotherhood's protest camps; Vice President ElBaradei has resigned as a result. Violence is no solution, says Ronald Meinardus, head of the Friedrich Naumann Stiftung in Cairo.
Germany has proposed stopping arms shipments to Egypt as part of a coordinated EU response to bloodshed amid a government crackdown on Islamists. Diplomats are set to thrash out the course of action Brussels might take.