Italian FM to visit Egypt on Monday after consulate attack to talk cooperation

Ahram Online , Sunday 12 Jul 2015

Paolo Gentiloni's visit aims to discuss bilateral relations and the fight against terrorism

Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni speaks during a press conference with his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif, in Tehran, Iran, Saturday, Feb. 28, 2015. Zarif says the world should not allow the hard-line Israeli leader to undermine peace. He was referring to Netanyahu's planned speech at the U.S. Congress next week on the emerging nuclear deal that Netanyahu considers dangerous. (Photo: AP)

Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni is to visit Cairo on Monday, two days after a car bomb targeted the Italian consulate in the city, state news agency MENA reported.

Gentiloni's one-day visit aims to discuss bilateral cooperation to combat terrorism.

The visit comes after calls by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi and Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry on Rome to intensify cooperation with Italy in the fight against terrorism.   

The attack left one civilian dead and ten others injured, according to the health ministry.

The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

The Saturday morning explosion destroyed the consulate's façade off Galaa Street. 

The blast caused damages to residential buildings adjacent to the consulate and burst a main water pipe in the area leading to a water outage.

Windows of buildings located a few hundred metres away from the explosion were also shattered, including some windows of the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square and the Press Syndicate on Abdel-Khaleq Tharwat Street.  

Shortly after the attack, Gentiloni said that his country would not be intimidated by the deadly bombing.  He also told the Italian La Republica newspaper that "there is no doubt that the aim of the attack targeted was the Italian consulate."  

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