Egypt expresses sorrow at Notre-Dame fire in Paris

Ahram Online , Tuesday 16 Apr 2019

File Photo: Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi gives an address at the Ittihadiya presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt May 26, 2017 (Photo: the Egyptian Presidency)

Egypt has expressed sorrow at a fire late on Monday that ravaged the medieval cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris, one of France's most famous landmarks.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi said he felt "deep sorrow" at the collapse of the giant spire of the eight-centuries-old cathedral and described it as "a great loss for all mankind."

"I declare my solidarity and the Egyptian people's solidarity with friends in…France and [I] wish the effects of this momentous human moment be contained as soon as possible," El-Sisi said in a brief statement published on his Facebook page.

El-Sisi was among a number of world leaders who rushed to react to the devastation of the Parisian landmark, including US President Donald Trump, German chancellor Angela Merkel, UN secretary general, António Guterres and Pope Francis.

Also on Monday, Grand Imam of Egypt's Al-Azhar, the highest seat of Sunni Islamic learning, expressed solidarity with the French people following the roaring blaze.

"I feel so sorry for the massive fire at the historical architectural masterpiece "Notre Dame Cathedral" in Paris, our hearts go out to our brothers in France, they deserve our full support," Al-Azhar quoted Sheikh Ahmed Al-Tayeb as saying in a statement published on Twitter in Arabic, French and English.

Egypt's parliament speaker Ali Abdel Aal also expressed "complete solidarity" with the French people on Tuesday, describing the the blaze as "very tragic" and a "big loss for humanity not just France."

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