Brigadier General Mohammed Sobhy, head of the Egyptian Defence Office in the UK and Lieutenant General Simon Mayall, the Defence Senior Adviser for the Middle East (Photo: Ahram)
Record participation by Egyptian expatriates at an event in London to commemorate the 1973 Arab-Israeli war indicates a high level of support for Egypt's armed forces, an Egyptian expat leader in the UK said.
Mostafa Ragab, chair of the Egyptian House in the UK, said if the army had not intervened to "protect the will of the Egyptian people during its last two revolutions" Egypt would have slipped into chaos.
"The armed forces have fought a number of wars and conflicts over the decades. In the wake of 1973 war victory, Egypt started a new phase during which new horizons for peace were opened in the Middle East, and Egypt regained its occupied territories,” Brigadier General Mohammed Sobhy, head of the Egyptian Defence Office in the UK, said in a speech at the Egyptian embassy in London.
The military chose to support and align with the Egyptian people during its two revolutions on 25 January 2011 and 30 June 2013, Sobhy added.
The UK government was represented by a military delegation headed by Lieutenant General Simon Mayall, the defence ministry's senior adviser for the Middle East.
Sobhy said UK-Egyptian military cooperation was “distinct," and both countries were very keen to boost these relations.
Participants included Bishop Angaelos, General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the UK, other prominent church figures, and Dr Tariq Heggi, the Egyptian presidency's senior scientific advisor.
A considerable number of Muslim Brotherhood members, who strongly oppose the ouster of elected president Mohamed Morsi, reside in the UK. The movement also has a very active media office in London.
Prominent Egyptian actors Mervat Amin and Samir Sabry attended the reception.