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'I believe Russian flights will return to more Egyptian cities soon,' Egypt's Sisi tells Russian Federation Council

Ahram Online , Tuesday 16 Oct 2018
Sisi in Russian Federation council
Egypt's President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi at the Russian Federation Council (Photo: Egyptian presidency)
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Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi said in a speech in front of the Russian Federation Council on Tuesday that he is confident that direct Russian flights will return soon to Egyptian cities besides Cairo.

"Our efforts to resume direct flights between Cairo and Moscow ended in success after the visit by President Putin to Egypt in December 2017. I am confident that given the positive spirit between the two countries, direct flights to other Egyptian cities will resume," the Egyptian president said, adding that the resumption of flights will help restore the flow of Russian tourists.

Russia has traditionally supplied the highest number of tourists to Egypt annually before flights were suspended in 2015 following the deadly crash of a Russian airliner in Sinai. 

Direct flights between Cairo and Moscow were resumed in April 2018.

President El-Sisi spoke in his speech about the close relationship between Egypt and Russia, who have enjoyed 75 years of official diplomatic relations.

"Russia was the first to help Egypt restore its occupied territories. Egypt also won't forget Russia's contribution in its battle for development, as it helped [Egypt] build the high dam and other megaprojects," he said.

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President El-Sisi also praised the cooperation between the two countries to build Egypt's first nuclear power plant in Dabaa, as well as the Russian industrial zone in the Suez Canal industrial zone.

El-Sisi is the first foreign leader to deliver a speech in front of the Russian Federation Council.

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On Syria and Libya, El-Sisi said that there is no place for "partial solutions to internal conflicts and fights" wherever they are.  

"In Syria, there is no other way except to push on with the political process… [by drafting a constitution] as a first step towards resuming talks and ending the crisis," he said.

On Libya, El-Sisi said that Egypt believes that the Libyan parties should be committed to implementing the UN special envoy's political solution in parallel with unifying the Libyan military to defend the country against terrorism.

During his visit to Russia, the Egyptian president is also set to meet with his counterpart Vladimir Putin on Wednesday as well as Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

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