French National Assembly member Amal Amelia Lakrafi stressed on Thursday that Paris supports Cairo in the face of terrorism in light of Egypt's important role in maintaining stability in the Middle East and Europe.
In an interview with the state news agency MENA on the sidelines of her visit to the Cairo International Book Fair, Lakrafi said that French President Emmanuel Macron, who concluded a visit to Egypt earlier this week, lauded the country's efforts in fighting terrorism and extremism.
She said that Macron insisted on visiting Egypt at a time when France is suffering from internal unrest on the back of the yellow vest protests.
Lakrafi added that Macron accepted President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi's invitation to visit the New Administrative Capital even though it was not listed on his itinerary given Egypt's importance to France.
The Egyptian president urged Macron to pump more investments in Egypt's mega development projects.
Lakrafi also said that Macron and his wife expressed their fascination with the Egyptian civilisation during their visit to Abu Simbel Temple, calling on French tourists to visit Egypt and asserting that it is a very safe country.
Lakrafi, 40, currently serves as the member of the National Assembly for the 10th district of French people living abroad, which includes Africa and the Middle East.
In 2017, the then-French National Assembly candidate visited Egypt on a tour to communicate with French citizens abroad on her electoral campaign to win a seat in the assembly as part of then-newly elected President Macron’s Le Republic en Marche (LREM) Party. She visited a number of Arab countries on her 2017 trip.
During the visit, Lakrafi, who is of Moroccan origin, expressed France's commitment to fighting terrorism in cooperation with Egypt, saying she first decided to take part in her country's war against terrorism after the 2015 deadly attack on Charlie Hebdo offices in Paris.
In a meeting with Egyptian media, Lakrafi stressed the historically strong Egyptian-French ties. She highlighted that Egypt is home to 6,000 French citizens, half of whom hold Egyptian citizenship.
Lakrafi also told Egyptian reporters that she has for many years been committed to volunteering in West Africa to promote equality, education, women’s rights and medical service.