Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi says the goal behind his visit to Algeria is to discuss challenges facing both Arab states, reported Al-Ahram’s Arabic news website.
Presidential spokesman Ihab Badawi said that al-Sisi’s visit to Algeria represents a quantum leap in the bilateral relations between the two countries.
al-Sisi also said that Egypt appreciates Algeria’s role and support in resuming Egypt’s activities in this week’s African summit.
Badawi added that al-Sisi expressed Egypt’s aspiration to bring investments back to Algeria, utilizing the private sector to contribute to development plans with Algeria’s government.
Also discussed were a number of regional issues including Palestine and the political situation in Libya, Syria and Iraq, Badawi said.
Egyptian-Algerian relations fractured in 2010 after the Desert Foxes’ 1-0 victory over the Pharaohs in the World Cup qualifications’ decider in November 2009.
Officials and media from both countries were involved in a war of words, with the Egyptian government alleging that 21 of its citizens were attacked after the match. Egypt summoned Algeria’s ambassador for “consultations” during the row. Following violence against Algerians in Cairo, Egyptian businesses in Algiers were ransacked.
Egypt and Algeria both have long borders with Libya where, three years after the fall of Muammar Gaddafi, a weak central government is struggling to contain Islamist militants and brigades of former rebels and militias.
The Egyptian President arrived in Algeria on Wednesday, his first foreign visit as president of Egypt.
“There are issues that we must work on with Algeria, with whom we share strategic ties,” said al-Sisi, adding that a joint plan and vision for the two countries’ interests must be launched, sentiments echoed by Algerian President Abdel-Aziz Bouteflika.
al-Sisi left Algeria for Equatorial Guinea’s Malabo, where he is scheduled to give a speech on Thursday at the African Union’s 23rd Ordinary Summit.
Source: Ahram Online