Egypt seeks balance between security and freedoms, Sisi tells Albright
Ahram Online, , Monday 15 Feb 2016
Former US secretary of state Madeleine Albright visited Cairo on Sunday as part of an Atlantic Council delegation aiming to 'develop a long-term framework for US policy in the region'

Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi told former US Secretary of State Madeline Albrightthat now that Egypt has finished its post 2013 transition period goals, Cairo is focused on development, adding that the country wants to create a balance between security and freedoms.

Albright visited with El-Sisi in Cairo on Sunday as part of the Atlantic Council delegation which included former National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley.

Hadley and Albright head the Middle East Strategy Task Force, an Atlantic Council initiative which "tries to better understand the underlying dynamics behind the current crises in the Middle East and develop a long-term framework for US policy in the region."

El-Sisi said the current circumstances make it necessary for Egypt and the United States to develop their strategic relations, adding that Cairo and Washington must base their relationship on mutual interests and respect.

The meeting also tackled regional challenges in the Middle East, especially in Syria, Libya, and Yemen.

El-Sisi told the delegation he believes it is important to block the supply of money and arms to terrorist organisations in areas of crisis in order to reach peaceful solutions.

Meanwhile, the American delegates urged Cairo to continue playing a leading role on the regional and international level, saying Egypt is a centre of stability in the Middle East.

El-Sisi urged the delegates to convey to Washington that the US should continue working to achieve a just peace between Palestinians and Israelis.

The president also called for adopting an international strategy to fight terrorism, which does not rely solely on security and military measures, but also promotes education and "the values of accepting the other."