US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson promised more aid for Cairo’s counter-terrorism efforts and economic development plan during a meeting with Egyptian counterpart SamehShoukry in Washington on Monday, adding that the Washington considers Cairo a real partner in the Middle East. The two officials stressed during their meeting the special and strategic ties that have binded the two countries for decades, vowing more cooperation on all levels. Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid said that Shoukry updated his US counterpart on the latest economic and security developments in Egypt, as well as the country’s counter-terrorism efforts. The two ministers also discussed a range of regional issues, including the Syrian crisis, where Shoukry stressed the importance of reaching a political solution to the conflict in a way that preserves the country’s territorial integrity and national institutions and achieves the hopes of the Syrian people. Shoukry also spoke with Tillerson about Egypt’s political efforts to end the crisis in Libya in accordance with the UN-brokered Skhirat agreement of 2015. On the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the Egyptian FM stressed the necessity of establishing a Palestinian state, pointing to Cairo’s efforts to return both sides to the negotiating table.
Shoukry will also discuss with US officials preparations for Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi’s upcoming visit to the US to meet with President Donald Trump, which will be the first meeting between an Egyptian and US president in years. The last official meeting in Washington of the countries’ two leaders was between former presidents Hosni Mubarak and George W. Bush in 2004.
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