After period of tensions, Trump praises Al-Sisi as friend and ally

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Following their meeting, US president Donald Trump declared in his statements on Monday, together with President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, that he is a great friend and ally to Al-Sisi.

Trump continued praising Al-Sisi’s efforts in Egypt, saying that the president has “done a fantastic job in a very difficult situation,” and asserted US support for him, saying “we are very much behind Egypt and the people of Egypt.”

The meeting took place during Al-Sisi’s first official visit to Washington. This was the second meeting between both leaders, as they previously met in New York prior to the American presidential election.

In a phone interview with Daily News Egypt, political analyst Abdel Moneim Saeed praised Trump’s statements about his support of Egypt, saying “when the world’s superpower says such statements, this shows full support for Egypt’s policies and strategies.”

Trump started his speech saying, “It’s great to be with the president of Egypt. And I will tell you, President Al-Sisi has been somebody that’s been very close to me from the first time I met him.”

Trump stated that the meeting took a long time, as they discussed and agreed on several topics, while their expectation had been that the meeting would be brief and quick.

During the meeting, both agreed on enhancing military cooperation, as Trump stated that they are planning to reach the highest level of work in this part through tools to combat terrorism that will include “plane orders, ship orders, and aircraft carrier orders.” Trump also said that the leaders agreed on working together to fight Islamist militants.

Saeed commented on this part, saying that it is important for Egypt to be supported by the US in this regard, as US support is significant; however, it will take a long time.

The meeting included economic discussions on ways of enhancing investments and bilateral relations. Additionally, they talked about ways of protecting the Middle East and reviewed the crises taking place in Arab countries, particularly the Palestinian issue.

This was Al-Sisi’s first visit to the White House, as there had been tensions between the two countries during former president Barack Obama’s tenure, due to the latter’s critical stance regarding the ouster of elected Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated president Mohamed Morsi.

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