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El-Sisi discusses military cooperation with Russian delegation

Sources say that the Egyptian military want Russia to help Egypt develop its own weapons production

Ahram Online, Thursday 14 Nov 2013
El-Sisi and Shoygu
Gen. El-Sisi (R) and Russian defence minister Sergei Shoygu (Photo courtesy of Egypt's army spokesman's official Facebook page)
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Egyptian armed forces chief Gen. Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi met with Russian defence minister Sergei Shoygu on Thursday to discuss military cooperation between the two nations, state news agency MENA reported.

The two men first met for half an hour behind closed doors, before being joined by Egyptian and Russian military officials for a three-hour meeting, according to Al-Ahram Arabic news website.

"We are welcoming you as dear friends", El-Sisi told his guests at the beginning of the meeting. "You used to, and still do, occupy a special position of appreciation," he added.

El-Sisi also said military cooperation between the two countries was entering a new stage, according to MENA.

Russian foreign ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said last week the talks would touch on "military and technical cooperation" -- a Russian euphemism for arms sales -- as well as political and economic ties, AFP reported. Lukashevich touted the talks as the first at such a high level "in the history of our friendly relations."

The meeting on Thursday was attended by army chief of staff Gen. Sedki Sobhi, defense minister aide in charge of armament affairs, Major Gen. Mohamed El-Assar, and defence ministerial aide in charge of legal affairs Major Gen. Mamdouh Shahine.

Russian attendees included Andrey Boytsov, first deputy director of the federal service on military-technical cooperation, and representatives of the Russian armament company, Rosoboronexport.

Shoygu praised the Egyptian army for implementing the will of the people, in what appeared to be a reference to the ouster of president Morsi in July, according to MENA.

Sources speaking on condition of anonymity told Al-Ahram that the meeting aimed at drawing the outlines of Russian-Egyptian military cooperation, and not discussing details concerning possible arm deals between the two countries.

According to the sources, Egypt's military officials told the Russian delegation they wanted Russia to help Egypt develop its own local armament production, and rejected the idea that the cooperation between the two countries be limited to arm sales. They also stressed that Egypt wanted to broaden its diplomatic relations on the international scene, and not replace any of its partners.

The Russian visit comes as Egypt's relationship with the United States, one of Cairo's main strategic allies for decades, has soured following the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi by the military. Morsi's removal came after mass protests calling on him to step down.

Relations between Cairo and Moscow were close during the presidency of Gamal Abdel-Nasser in the 1950s and 1960s.

In 1972, president Anwar Sadat changed direction, throwing out thousands of Soviet military advisers and building a close alliance with United States soon after the 1973 war with Israel.

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sabri
15-11-2013 02:16am
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sisi need weapon to fire eqyptians
The weapon is required by sisi to kill the Eqypt people. He can not spend people tax money only to keep his position from justice. The elected representatives have right to decide using tax money not by this coup illegal regime.
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Jeff Brilley
14-11-2013 07:54pm
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10+
A reader
When it comes to military equipment, Russia sell arms not the factories to produce arms (check the history of Vietnam and China). Russia wants cash for any military equipment they sell to other countries. Egypt does not have the money to buy the military equipment it needs to sustain its army, navy and air force. The Gulf Nations will not give money to Egypt to put into the Russian treasury. The reality is that either Egypt honors the agreements with the United States to supply the military of Egypt or the Egyptian military will be unable to afford the equipment that is needed to maintain its military readiness.
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Kevin
15-11-2013 04:59pm
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1+
What is a coup?
Exactly what is the definition of a coup? I see you have been drinking up the 0bama propaganda that the "coup" was not a "coup," but a "polite removal of a legally elected president because the people didn't like him anymore" coup. He was physically removed from office by the military, it was a coup and the US should end all aid to Egypt. If you don't like having a terrorist as your president, then you shouldn't have elected him in the first place.
Yasmina
15-11-2013 04:52am
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Egypt has not broken its agreement
The 1.5 billion in US military aid was not "held up" by Egypt. It is the US that is not honoring its agreement based on the flimsey excuse of a military coup when in fact, it was the army carrying out the will of the people.
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