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Egypt Keen on Relations with Iran

Service : Politic
TEHRAN, April 11 (ICANA) – Head of Egypt's ruling military council, Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, says Iran is not an enemy of Egypt, calling for better ties with the Islamic Republic.
Monday, April 11, 2011 12:00:47 PM
Egypt Keen on Relations with Iran

In an interview with German daily Der Spiegel, Tantawi lauded Iran's excellent position in the Islamic world, and expressed hope that Tehran-Cairo relations would increase.

"We hope that the upcoming stage would be a stage of special bilateral relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran, serving the best of both countries," said the head of the Supreme Council of the Egyptian armed forces.

Moreover, Egyptian Shia scholar Ahmad Rasem al-Nafis told Fars news agency on Sunday that if Egypt wants to regain its past glory, it should restore its relations with Iran.

"I believe that Cairo must correct its past mistakes toward Tehran and start a new chapter in its mutual relations," he noted.

He went on to say that former President Hosni Mubarak made himself an instrument for implementing the policies of the US and Israel in the region, and blocked all efforts to establish close relations with Tehran.

A senior Majlis deputy, referring to the concern voiced by the West and certain regional sheikhs over resumption of diplomatic ties between Iran and Egypt said Tehran-Cairo rapprochement would put interests of the West and safety of the Zionist usurper regime in the region at grave danger.

Pointing to the concern of the U.S. and the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council over imminent resumption of diplomatic relations between Iran and Egypt, Mahmoud Ahmadi Bighash said Egypt under Hosni Mubarak was considered the closest strategic ally of the United States and the Zionist regime in the Middle East. But, he said, with the fall of Mubarak the situation is different today.

Speaking to ICANA, Bighash. Member of the National Security and Foreign Policy Commission (NSFPC) of the Majlis, added: “Washington is very much concerned about the new situation in the region and is exerting utmost efforts to prevent the new Egyptian government from resuming to diplomatic relations with Tehran as unity between the two countries would seriously endanger interests of the West and security of the regime occupying Qods.”

Certain Persian Gulf sheikhs who are subservient to the global imperialism have felt the threat as well, Bighash said, adding that they would resort to any scheme in order to block Cairo’s rapprochement with Tehran. Because, he further remarked, Egypt previously played a special and effective role in the Arab World in safeguarding security of the Zionist regime. “But, it is not following the previous trend now.”

The Egyptian foreign minister has called for normalization of ties with Iran, saying Cairo is committed to seeking to improve long-frozen relations with Tehran. The post-revolution Egypt looks poised to turn a new page in its relations with the Islamic Republic as Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil al-Arabi says his country will witness a new phase in its foreign ties with Iran.

Following his meeting with Austrian Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger in Cairo on Wednesday, al-Arabi stated that restoration of Iran-Egypt ties would not pose a threat to anyone, and that the two countries have traditionally-rooted relations.

The remarks have been welcomed by many Egyptian politicians and diplomats as a very positive step as the post-revolution Egypt comes into its own.

"I'm very optimistic about restoration of diplomatic ties between Iran and Egypt, the repercussions of the move on the Middle East will also be positive and the two great nations will unite," Abdullah al-Ashal, former Egyptian Deputy Foreign Minister, told Press TV.

Director of Iran's Interests Section in Cairo Mojtaba Amani has also spoken of efforts in order to accelerate the renewal of full diplomatic relations, but brushed aside concerns about rapprochement between the two countries.

"I do not understand why countries with diplomatic relations with Iran are concerned over the Egyptian initiative to restore ties with Iran," Amani noted in an interview with the Press TV correspondent in Cairo.

In his first press conference as Egypt's foreign minister in March, al-Arabi pointed out that the Egyptian government does not see Iran as an enemy, noting that the two countries have historically enjoyed deep relations.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi and some top members of Iranian parliament, including Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani too have welcomed Egyptian foreign minister’s overture.

Iran severed ties with Egypt after Cairo signed the 1978 Camp David Accords with the Israeli regime and offered asylum to Iran's deposed dictator, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.

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