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Update: Egypt stands in support of Iraq's unity, integrity, efforts to counter extremism, restore security
Published in The Egyptian Gazette on 25 - 06 - 2018

Staff report
CAIRO, June 25, 2018 - President Abdel Fattah El Sisi has reiterated Egypt's keenness to stand by Iraq and support its unity, stressing in this context the importance of consolidating the cohesiveness of the fabric of the Iraqi society.
The reiteration of this position came at a meeting Monday between President Sisi and the visiting Iraqi Vice-President Iyad Allawi who had arrived in Cairo the day before, beginning an official visit to Egypt. Prime Minister Dr Moustafa Madbouli welcomed Mr Allawi upon arrival at Cairo International Airport on Sunday.
Attending the meeting between the Egyptian leader and visiting Iraqi VP Monday were Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukri and the Acting Head of the General Intelligence, Major-General Abbas Kamel.
At the start of the meeting, President Sisi welcomed Mr Allawi and congratulated him on wining the parliamentary elections that were held in Iraq last May.
On bilateral relations, President Sisi lauded the recent progress of co-operation between the two countries and emphasised the keenness of Egypt to stand by Iraq and developing relations with it in all fields, the Spokesman for the Presidency, Ambassador Bassam Radi, said in a statement.
President Sisi then reiterated Egypt's support for the unity of Iraq and its backing to Iraq's efforts to uproot extremism and restore security and stability over all the country's territory. In this regard, the president underscored the importance of sustaining the action to consolidate the cohesiveness of the fabric of the Iraqi society, Spokesman Radi said.
Such action, President Sisi explained, is conducive to promoting citizenship as a framework and foiling all attempts to foment division and sow sedition, Spokesman Radi said.
The president then stressed the importance of continuing the process of consultation and coordination between the two countries with a view to bolstering Arab solidarity in the face of the regional crises that the Arab nation is now facing. Such crises, the president said, invoke the importance of solidifying the oneness of Arab ranks and defusing sectarianism and schism.
For his part, Mr Allawi expressed to President Sisi the thanks and appreciation of the Iraqi people for the position of support that Egypt, the leadership and people, is lending to Iraq.
Stressing in this connection that Egypt constitutes a main pillar for security and stability in the Arab homeland, Mr Allawi noted Iraq's interest in enhancing the distinguished relations with Egypt in various fields.
Discussions between President Sisi and the visiting Iraqi vice-president covered the latest developments in Iraq, the political scene and the negotiations now under way to form a new government. On this point, President Sisi welcomed the ongoing political consultations between various Iraqi trends and wished Iraq success in forming a national and strong government that represents all citizens.
President Sisi also stressed in this context Egypt's keenness on the unity and integrity of Iraq as well as its support for Iraq's national institutions and its rejection of all attempts to interfere in Iraq's internal affairs.
Before calling on the Egyptian leader Monday, the visiting Iraqi vice-president had held talks with Prime Minister Madbouli who asserted Egypt's willingness to support the Iraqi government's developmental and reconstruction efforts through partnership between Egyptian and Iraqi companies. Dr Madbouli also said during the talks that Egypt is looking forward to Iraq totally eradicating terrorism and restoring its economic progress and its role at both Arab and regional levels.

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