Sisi, Trump discuss Libyan crisis, Ethiopian Dam talks

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Thu, 26 Dec 2019 - 07:01 GMT

U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Egypt's President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi on the sidelines of the annual United Nations General Assembly in New York City, New York, U.S., September 23, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Egypt's President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi on the sidelines of the annual United Nations General Assembly in New York City, New York, U.S., September 23, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

CAIRO – 26 December 2019: President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi discussed with US President Donald Trump regional issues, especially the situation in Libya, in a phone call on Thursday, the Egyptian Presidency said in a statement.

Sisi affirmed Egypt’s support to the Libyan people’s will, in this regard, to achieve security and stability in the war-torn country, during his phone call with Trump.

The Egyptian leader also hailed the role played by the Libyan National Army, led by Khalifa Haftar, to combat terrorism, and thwart the activities of the armed organizations and militias that have threatened regional security.

He affirmed the need to put an end to the illegal foreign intervention in the Libyan issue, a month after Turkey and the Tripoli-based government of Fayez al-Sarraj, which the Libyan parliament does not recognize, agreed on a maritime accord.

Sisi and Trump also discussed the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) talks, which Trump has recently sponsored. Sisi expressed appreciation for the US efforts in this regard.

Trump, for his part, affirmed his keenness to help the GERD negotiations succeed, by having a just and positive outcome that would ensure the rights of all parties involved.

Sisi and Trump also discussed issues related to the strategic bilateral relations between Egypt and the US. They confirmed their countries’ willingness to develop cooperation in all fields and work on boosting special relations between them.

Egypt and Ethiopia are at loggerheads over the $4-billion GERD; Cairo voiced concern over its water share after Ethiopia started building the dam on the Blue Nile in May 2011.

In November, the US sent an invitation to the three countries to resume the talks. Meetings were held with foreign and water ministers of Egypt and Upper stream countries, in the presence of United States Secretary of Treasury Steven Mnuchin and a representative from the World Bank.

Trump praised that meeting with the top representatives of the three countries, saying on his Twitter that it “went well and discussions will continue during the day!”

Sisi, following Trump’s remarks, also lauded the constructive and pivotal role played by the American president and the US, which reflects the depth of the strategic relations between Egypt and the United States. The president said that this would contribute to reaching an agreement on the filling and operation of GERD and promoting stability and development in East Africa.

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