President-elect Donald Trump’s goal in the Middle East “corresponds with our objectives,” Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry told an annual gathering on US and Israeli policy interests late Friday.
He was the first Egyptian official to ever address the event, known as the Saban Forum.
Shoukry added that Trump has a “clear vision” for the region, and that Egypt is “moving quickly to restore its leading role” as the area undergoes rapid changes.
His remarks focused on the theme of stability and territorial integrity, and he called for “a holistic approach to peace and rebuilding – not a sequential one” in Syria.
Preserving the nation-state and supporting dialogue amongst “moderate groups” in Syria sums up Egypt’s approach, Shoukry explained.
“External political engineering is neither desirable nor possible” in the Middle East, he said, adding that “orderly change” is crucial not to compromise stability.
A dysfunctional government, he suggested, is preferable to instability that could promote terrorism.
On the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Shoukry called on both sides to resume talks “in good faith,” and said the parameters of the two-state solution are “self-evident”.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi is willing to assist with moving negotiations forward, and is also committed to “post-agreement security guarantees” for Israel should it secure a deal with Palestinians, Shoukry said.
He referred to US Secretary of State John Kerry’s effort to revive a path toward talks in 2014 as “valiant.” “Egypt is committed to consolidate the  peace treaty with Israel,” he added. “[We] continue to regard the treaty as a fundamental component to stabilize the region.” (end) ys.tg