Erdogan in Egypt… closing 12 years of cut relations

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Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al Sisi announced on Wednesday that his country is opening a new page with Türkiye in a way that enriches bilateral relations, and stressed the endeavor to raise trade exchange with it to $15 billion in the coming years.

This came during a press conference with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

The Egyptian President said, “We’re opening with Türkiye a new page between our two countries, which will enrich our bilateral relations and put them on the right track”.

He added, “We seek to raise trade exchange with Türkiye to $15 billion over the next few years”.

For his part, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday that Ankara is ready to work with Cairo on the reconstruction of Gaza, and pledged to increase trade with Egypt to $15 billion in the short term.

Erdogan added in the joint press conference that the humanitarian tragedy in Gaza topped the agenda of his talks with Sisi, and that the two countries are evaluating cooperation in the fields of energy and defense.

The Turkish President and his Egyptian counterpart signed a joint declaration regarding the restructuring of the meetings of the high-level Turkish-Egyptian Strategic Cooperation Council.

The declaration indicated the existence of deep-rooted common historical and cultural ties between Türkiye and Egypt.

The announcement stated that the presidents of the two countries will chair the upcoming meetings of the High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council, and that the Council will meet alternately every two years in Türkiye and Egypt, and the work will be coordinated and the agenda for each meeting will be prepared by the foreign ministers of the two countries.

The announcement explained that the meetings of the Joint Planning Group will be held under the joint chairmanship of the foreign ministers of the two countries, in order to prepare for the high-level Strategic Cooperation Council meetings, and that senior officials from other relevant ministries and institutions will participate in these meetings.

He added that Türkiye and Egypt affirm their determination to continue consolidating their strong relations in all fields in order to develop their solidarity and cooperation that serves the common interests of the two countries and promote peace, stability and prosperity in the region and beyond.

Within the scope of the declaration between Türkiye and Egypt, cooperation will take place between the two sides in the fields of political, diplomatic, economic, commercial, banking, financial services, investments, transportation, aviation, maritime, tourism, health, work, security, military and defense industries, and combating organized crime and terrorism.

Cooperation will also take place in the fields of culture, education, science and technology, energy, mining, agriculture, environment, forestry, residential and urban transformation, climate change, communications, information and consular affairs.

The joint declaration pointed out that the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and other relevant ministers of the two countries were assigned to activate cooperation in these areas, carry out the necessary coordination and take all measures to prepare memorandums of understanding and agreements.

The visit represented a major step on the path to rebuilding relations that were strained between the two regional powers due to the military coup in Egypt in 2013 and its repercussions on the Muslim Brotherhood.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit to Egypt, is the first in 12 years, at the invitation of his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah al Sisi.

Türkiye and Egypt are two large and important countries in the Middle East and the Islamic world, and they share deep-rooted historical relations that both sides aspire to develop and strengthen.

These distinguished relations are based on a shared heritage of history and culture, strong ties strengthened by development partnerships and cooperation, and a strategic vision towards a constructive common future.

On Wednesday, Egyptian President Sisi received his Turkish counterpart, in an official ceremony in Cairo, which he is visiting for official discussions.

Sisi received Erdogan upon his arrival at the Ittihadiya Palace, where the national anthems of the two countries were played, after the two presidents stood in the official reception area while artillery shells were fired.

Erdogan reviewed the guard of honor with his counterpart, Sisi, to salute the soldiers.

The two presidents shook hands in front of the journalists, and after the introduction of the two delegations, bilateral and joint meetings between the delegations began.

Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan, Treasury and Finance Mehmet Şimşek, Defense Yaşar Güler, Health Fahrettin Koca, Industry and Technology Mehmet Fatih Kacır, Trade Ömer Bolat, and Family and Social Services Minister Mahinur Özdemir Göktaş participated in the ceremony.

The head of the Turkish Presidency’s Communications Department, Fahrettin Altun, the President’s Senior Advisor, Akif Çağatay Kılıç, and the Head of National Intelligence, Ibrahim Kalin, also participated in the ceremony.

Earlier on Wednesday, the Turkish President arrived in Cairo on an official visit during which he will meet his counterpart, Sisi, who was the first to receive him, in addition to the Turkish Ambassador to Cairo, Salih Mutlu Şen.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al Sisi and his wife received Erdogan and his wife at Cairo Airport, according to footage broadcast by Egyptian media.

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