Sisi praises efforts to stop escalation in Iraq; calls for dialogue

Ahram Online , Tuesday 30 Aug 2022

Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi praised on Tuesday calls from Iraqi parties and leaders to stop escalation and violence in the country following a day of clashes between rival Shia forces and the army that left at least 30 dead and hundreds wounded.

Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi
File Photo: Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi.


“I appreciate the sincere efforts from Iraqi parties and the calls of different political powers in the country to stop escalation and violence,” El-Sisi said in a statement on Tuesday, adding that these efforts have “led to rapid containment of the recent crisis in brotherly Iraq.”

The Egyptian president expressed his wish that these “sincere efforts” lead to a dialogue between all parties in the country for the sake of Iraq’s safety and to safeguard its wealth and resources.

Earlier on Tuesday, Shia cleric Muqtada Al-Sadr addressed Iraqis via TV from Najaf, apologising to the Iraqi people and ordering his supporters to leave official institutions that they stormed on Monday in Baghdad’s Green Zone, vowing that if they did not withdraw within an hour, he would disavow them forever.

Shortly after his address, Al-Sadr loyalists began to withdraw from the street.

Clashes erupted on Monday between Shia rival powers as well as security forces after Al-Sadr loyalists stormed the Iraqi presidential palace following the controversial Shia cleric’s announcement that he was retiring from politics.

President El-Sisi reiterated Egypt’s full solidarity and support for Iraq’s stability and security in telephone calls on Monday with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi and President Barham Salih hours after protesters stormed the government palace.

In a public statement, El-Sisi said he was following with “great concern” the current situation in Iraq, calling on all Iraqi parties to overcome the political crisis through a dialogue in order to achieve security, stability and prosperity for all Iraqis.

Egypt has been cultivating ties with Iraq recently. El-Sisi visited Baghdad in June 2021, becoming the first Egyptian president to do so since former Iraqi President Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait in 1990.

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