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US stands with Egypt's efforts to protect religious freedoms, fight terrorism: Pompeo tells Sisi

Ahram Online , Thursday 10 Jan 2019
Pompeo, Sisi
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, left, meets with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019 (Photo: AP)

Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi met on Thursday in Cairo with US Secretary of State Michael Pompeo, where he stressed Egypt's keenness to enhance bilateral and strategic relations with the US on all levels.

The meeting was attended by Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and the chief of Egypt's General Intelligence Service Abbas Kamel.

The US Secretary of State affirmed that his country stands firmly behind Egypt's commitments to protecting religious freedoms and fighting terrorism.

Pompeo conveyed greetings from US President Donald Trump to El-Sisi on the recent inauguration of Al-Fattah Al-Alim Mosque and the Nativity of the Christ Cathedral, which Pompeo said reflects Egypt's efforts to reinforce the principles of fraternity and coexistence.

The US secretary of state stressed his country's interest in strengthening strategic relations with Egypt, as well as intensifying coordination and joint consultation on Middle East issues in light of Egypt's political role and leadership in the region.

Egyptian presidential spokesman Bassam Rady said that the meeting also involved a discussion on combating terrorism and extremist ideologies.

El-Sisi stressed the Egyptian government and people's determination to continue their efforts to defeat terrorism.

The US secretary of state praised and expressed his country's support for Egypt's decisive efforts in this regard.

Rady said that the meeting also discussed the developments in Libya, Syria and Yemen, and the efforts to reach political settlements to the conflicts in these countries while preserving their territorial integrity and national institutions.

The two also reviewed the latest developments in the Palestinian issue and means of reviving the peace process.

The Egyptian president affirmed Egypt's stance on reaching a just and comprehensive solution that guarantees the rights of the Palestinian people and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state according to international resolutions, expressing Egypt's keenness to cooperate with the United States on this issue.

Pompeo embarked on an eight-country tour in the region on Tuesday, starting with Jordan. The tour is expected to focus on Syria, Iran and Yemen, as well as US bilateral relations with Arab countries.

The US Secretary of State will meet with a number of Egyptian officials to discuss economic and energy cooperation as well as major regional issues including Iran, Gaza and counterterrorism, the US State Department said.

While in the Egyptian capital, Pompeo delivered a speech on the US’ “commitment to peace, prosperity, stability, and security in the Middle East.”

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