Iran’s President Ahmadinejad In Egypt In Landmark Visit

My Catbird Seat February 6, 2013 2
Iran’s President Ahmadinejad In Egypt In Landmark Visit

Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad has held talks in Cairo with his Egyptian counterpart, Muhammad Morsi, as he began the first visit to Egypt by an Iranian president since 1979.

 

Egypt's state-run news agency MENA said that immediately after Ahmadinejard's arrival, the two leaders headed into discussions on regional developments and on "how to end the bloodshed in Syria" without military intervention.

Egypt and Iran support opposing sides in the conflict.

Tehran backs President Bashar al-Assad's regime, while Egypt has sided with Syria's rebels.

MENA said the two also discussed ways to boost relations between Egypt and Iran.

Ahmadinejad is leading the Iranian delegation to the Cairo summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, which begins on February 6.

Ties between Egypt and Iran were cut in 1980 after Egypt signed a peace treaty with Israel.

Since the 2011 revolution that toppled longtime Egyptian ruler Hosni Mubarak and brought to power the Sunni Muslim Brotherhood, Iran has taken steps to improve its relations with Egypt.

Morsi visited Iran last year for a summit of the Nonaligned Movement.

Iran welcomed Morsi's election last June as Egypt's first freely elected civilian president, saying it marked a new stage of development in the Middle East and an "Islamic awakening."

The two countries, however, have remained deeply split over the civil war in Syria.

Iran is one of the last remaining allies of the Assad regime in Syria, which is led by members of the Alawite community, an offshoot of Shi'ite Islam. Tehran has vigorously opposed any move toward foreign intervention in the conflict.

Morsi, meanwhile, has been a vocal opponent of the Syrian regime. His government has expressed backing for the rebels seeking to overthrow the government.

The Syrian war is expected to be among the main issues discussed at the Organization of Islamic Cooperation summit in Cairo. Syria's membership in the organization has been suspended because of the war.

Ties between Iran and Egypt were bitter during the rule of Hosni Mubarak, who ruled Egypt for 30 years before he was ousted amid mass demonstrations in February 2011, leading to Morsi's eventual election.

Moves were made last year to reestablish formal Iranian-Egyptian relations, but full diplomatic ties have not yet been restored.

Once-strong links between Iran and Egypt were severed after 1979, when Iran had its Islamic Revolution and Egypt reached a peace agreement with Israel. Iran does not recognize the Jewish state.

In a sign of the former hostility between Iran and Egypt, Iran named a Tehran street after the Islamist who led the squad that in 1981 assassinated Anwar Sadat, the Egyptian president who concluded the peace treaty with Israel.

Both Egypt and Israel receive billions of dollars in aid each year from Iran's rival, the United States.

With reporting by Reuters, dpa, AP, and Ahram Online

Source: Payvand News

Report by RFE/RL; photos by Mona Hoobehfekr, ISNA

2 Comments »

  1. rexw February 6, 2013 at 6:35 pm - Reply

    Iran and Egypt. Not close friends but having a visit together.
    It is pleasing to see this taking place. Newly elected Muhammad Morsi, loaded with troubles of his own, would have welcomed such a distraction. But no one could imagine that they do not have common ground in most areas, if not in Syria. Even with opposing views in that media mis-represented fracas, skirmish, war, battle terrorist attack, (media source dependant , so please choose your own word) , they can still talk.
    There are many countries that couldn’t do that. As Biden says, everything’s on the table, as Clinton before him, as Obama has said many times. A standard phrase.
    Literal meaning
     
    ” who do you think you are kidding. We are America. We call the tune. Let you know later, but don’t hold your breath. We are America, or did I saw that already. We have a veto and love it."
     
    As a gesture for peace between nations, similar nations, that is, I am prepared to go to Teheran with a paint brush and tin of paint and change the name of the street named after Anwar Sadat following his mistaken venture into an agreement with Israel, such things only ever done at one’s peril. Ask America.. USS Liberty and on, and on. $3.5 billion this year for the Netanyahu social club.
    A consensus will be reached to find something acceptable to both Iran and Egypt.. This should occur as there is no agreement with Israel and Egypt, and never likely to be again. Their policy of ‘Eretz Israel’ may also include Egypt. One just never knows. It is an ever-changing feast. Expansionism is such fun when you have a US veto at your command.
     
    More recently we saw the  double-speaking Ms Clinton in Egypt trying desperately to impress Mr. Morsi.. A less comfortable person in that part of the world one couldn’t  imagine. The Egyptian people also felt the same way about her as well. One can always recall a previous visit with the then President Mubarak hosting as an  ‘independent, supportive non-aligned’ party (fiction, of course) walking down the red carpet with Netanyahu, Clinton and Abbas for those elusive Peace Talks. A day that would have warmed the hearts of the great storytellers,  such as Hans Christian Andersen. Peace talks, indeed. Ho-hum.
    No one could possibly have thought that Abbas was under any illusion he was the only player with peace on his mind in that motley group of political deviates.
     
    So Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad holding talks in Cairo with his Egyptian counterpart would be seen by the rest of the world, with the exception of the USA and Israel, as a positive step. Egypt needs stability (not an objective of any interest to the US and Israel) and Iran has that quality. It also has cultural, educatian and many social advantages that could assist a new ‘democratic’ country.
     
    The lack of positive comment from this visit, relying as we all seem to on the professional (Zionist in the main) media hacks in that part of the world,  always  “toning down” anything that has a positive component but even more so in the re-hashed US news on such activities if, and that’s a big if, such comment even makes the pages of the US print and electronic media.  Unlikely.
     
    No excuse really. The Superbowl is over so it’s back to normal……the Senate browbeating of Chuck Hagel who received a respite for a day or two.
     
    I am nominating Iran to become the next member of BRICS, the new ‘power group’ of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
     
    Had a nice ring to it……B R I C S I.
     
    Should quieten things down a bit.  We may even get to like each other if we can just find someone to treat Israel’s bad case of national psychosis

  2. Rufus Peterson February 7, 2013 at 8:35 am - Reply

    Steps in the Islamic world away from divisiveness are most in order. Iran is not a monster. However, not quite a week ago I happened to tune into Hannity and he was making noise about Morsi, the Islamic brotherhood etc. How can we trust anyone so anti-semitic! How can we justify aid to Egypt? Simple. Short memories do not recall aid to Egypt was originally to buy them off from hostility towards Israel. Hannity wants to tar all mooslims w/ the same brush. Can you say 'a greater Israel'?
    The neocons are not yet down for the count, so expect some anti-Egyptian bellowing soon.

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