Egyptian, Iraqi, Jordanian leaders discuss means to boost trilateral cooperation

Ahram Online , Sunday 27 Jun 2021

The leaders discussed intensifying coordination on the most important regional issues, in light of the successive international and regional developments

From right, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi and King Abullah II of Jordan hold a tripartite summit in Baghdad. Egyptian Presidency

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi and King Abullah II of Jordan discussed on Sunday means to enhance economic and commercial cooperation and investments among the three countries.

This comes as the three leaders held a tripartite summit in Baghdad, the fourth round of talks between the three countries to promote cooperation mechanisms and reinforce political consultation on regional issues.

Enhancing the trilateral ties aims to establish a new stage of strategic integration among the three countries that is based on joint developmental goals undergirded by firm historic and social ties, a statement by the Egyptian Presidency said.

The leaders also discussed intensifying consultation and coordination among the three countries on important regional issues, in light of successive international and regional developments.

These developments require cooperation among the three countries so that they can face the joint challenges and dangers, the statement read, especially amid the regional interference that threatens Arab national security.

They also agreed on the need to continue cooperating in the fight against terrorism and extremist thought.

El-Sisi, during the summit, affirmed Egypt’s keenness to protect Arab water security and welcomed Jordanian and Iraqi support for the Egyptian position on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) issue.

The GERD issue is a top priority for Egyptian policy as it poses a direct threat to all aspects of Egyptian national security, the statement read.

El-Sisi underscored Egypt’s unwavering stance on the necessity of reaching a legally binding agreement on the filling and operation of the dam.

During the summit, the leaders discussed a number of regional issues of mutual concern, especially developments in the Palestinian cause.

They reiterated support to the Palestinian people to obtain their legitimate rights, including the establishment of an independent Palestinian state in accordance with the relevant international resolutions.

The leaders also hailed the recent Egyptian efforts that led to the de-escalation and declaration of ceasefire in the Gaza Strip as well the Egyptian initiative for the reconstruction of the strip.

This comes over a month after Israel and Palestinian factions agreed on an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire in Gaza. The ceasefire ended 11 days of Israeli airstrikes that killed more than 250 and injured thousands of Palestinians in the enclave.

El-Sisi affirmed the need for concerted efforts among the nations of the Arab world and the Middle East to address the challenges facing the region and restore stability.

The three leaders agreed on intensified efforts to reach a comprehensive political settlement within the framework of preserving the unity, independence and territorial integrity of the countries of the region.

El-Sisi voiced support for the implementation of strategic projects in cooperation with Jordan and Iraq, especially on the political and security levels.

This affirms the keenness of the three countries to maintain the momentum of cooperation, El-Sisi said, amid their awareness of the current circumstances due to the coronavirus pandemic and its economic implications.

El-Sisi also held a separate meeting with King Abdullah II, during which the president expressed his aspiration to continue the ongoing coordination between the two countries on the bilateral level and the trilateral level with Iraq.

El-Sisi also affirmed Egypt’s support to the development path in Jordan led by King Abdullah and to the procedures the king takes to preserve the security and stability of the kingdom, a separate statement by the Presidency read.

El-Sisi voiced Egypt’s full solidarity with Jordan, noting that Jordan’s security is an inseparable part of the Egyptian national security.

They discussed cooperation between Egypt and Jordan especially in energy files, counter-terrorism and reviewed means to increase trade exchange between the two countries.

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