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Egypt's Sisi vows cooperation with Iraq following IS defeat

Ahram Online , Saturday 23 Mar 2019
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Adel Abdul-Mahdi in Cairo on Saturday March 23, 2019 (Photo: Courtesy of Egypt's Presidential Spokesperson)
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Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi said on Saturday that Egypt would cooperate with Iraq at different levels, especially following the defeat of “the so-called Islamic State territories.”

He was speaking at a joint press conference with Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi of Iraq, following a meeting between the pair and their delegations.

The Egyptian president welcomed the Iraqi prime minister on his first visit to Egypt, while offering condolences to those who had drowned in a ferry accident on the Tigris river on Friday.

The two leaders discussed matters of mutual concerns in terrorism, and boosting economic and trade relations between both countries.

"Your visit is very crucial for all of us to celebrate Iraq's liberation and achievements in its security, stability and the unity of its territory," El-Sisi said.

He stressed the importance of continuing to comprehensively work as an Arab and international community towards this threat.

"We must firmly confront all sorts of terror…we must also work on this new phenomenon of the foreign fighters which is considered to be one of the consequences of terrorism," El-Sisi said.

Egypt’s mega-project expertise

El-Sisi said that economic cooperation issues have been a high priority, based on the capabilities of the two countries and the desire to benefit from the potential and expertise available on both sides in various fields, especially in the reconstruction of liberated Iraqi areas.

The Egyptian president said that his country is willing to share its expertise in the establishment of mega-national projects. 

He added that Egypt is keen to cooperate with businessmen who have had the experience of working in Iraq in the past. 

Tripartite meetings: Egypt, Jordan, Iraq

A tripartite meeting between El-Sisi, Abdul Mahdi and King Abdullah of Jordan is expected on Sunday.

"Our current level of relations with Egypt is far less than what we aspire to as a government and people, thus we are looking forward to meeting tomorrow at the tripartite meetings which will be attended by the Egyptian president and also by the Jordanian king," said Abdul Mahdi.

The Iraqi prime minister also stressed that his country is looking forward to partnering with and for the "friendship" of all countries in the Middle East.

El-Sisi said that Sunday's meetings are expected to highlight the framework and mechanisms of cooperation.

There will also be a tripartite meeting of foreign ministers and intelligence chiefs from Egypt, Jordan, and Iraq on Saturday, a statement by Egypt's foreign ministry read.

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