In Photos: US first lady explores Al-Azhar Mosque, Great Pyramids in Egypt visit

Ahram Online , Saturday 3 Jun 2023

US First Lady Jill Biden embarked on a captivating tour of Egypt's rich cultural heritage, exploring Cairo's thousand year old Al-Azhar Mosque and the Great Pyramids of Giza, during her ongoing two-day visit to the country.

Jill Biden
US First Lady Jill Biden tours the thousand-year-old Al-Azhar Mosque during her Egypt visit, 2 June 2023. Al-Azhar


As part of her week-long, four-country tour in the region, Biden's visit to Egypt followed her attendance at the wedding of Jordanian Crown Prince Hussein bin Abdullah on Thursday.  

Upon her arrival in Cairo on Friday, Jill Biden was warmly received by President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi and First Lady Entissar Amer.

Her visit commenced with a visit to Cairo's historic Al-Azhar Mosque, where she engaged in a conversation with young leaders.

"This is my second trip to Umm Al-Dunya, my first to Cairo. And I just had a very special lunch with Mrs. Amer and a warm welcome by your president," Jill Biden said in a conversation.

During her time at Al-Azhar Mosque, Biden was welcomed by Salama Dawood, president of Al-Azhar University, who highlighted Al-Azhar's role in spreading moderate and enlightened Islamic teachings as they toured the mosque, established more than 1,083 Hijri years ago

Dawood also conveyed the greetings of Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Sheikh Ahmed El-Tayyeb to Jill Biden

During the visit, Dawood stressed the importance that Al-Azhar has attached to women's rights and dignity, especially since El-Tayyeb took the reins in 2010.

The US first lady underscored the significance of supporting youth education and women's empowerment, while emphasizing the need for mutual understanding and stronger ties among people.

Jill Biden, for her part, emphasised the importance of supporting youth education and female empowerment. She also stressed the need for convergence and strengthening ties among peoples.

"I believe that understanding each other can help us find more common ground—see that, even if we are different, we’re united by our desire for truth, love, justice, and healing," Jill Biden said.

Jill Biden said she and US President Joe Biden, believes that the US must remain as partner to Egypt—working side by side.

"Most of all, we believe that work is not just about government-to-government relationships. It’s people to people. Heart to heart," she added.

After her visit to Al-Azhar Mosque, Jill Biden paid a visit to Cairo's Elsewedy Technical Academy (STA), a secondary level technical education school, where she met with young Egyptians.

Continuing her exploration of Egypt's cultural wonders, Jill Biden celebrated her 72nd birthday on Saturday with a visit to the iconic Great Pyramids Plateau, including the Sphinx and the Great Pyramid of Khufu.

The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities highlighted, in a statement, Biden's enchantment with the pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx, capturing memorable moments during her tour.

Accompanied by Egyptian Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Ahmed Issa and Acting US Ambassador in Cairo John Desrocher, Jill Biden immersed herself in the grandeur of Egypt's ancient history. At the conclusion of her tour, Minister Issa presented Biden with a replica of an ancient collar.

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