Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry meets with his French counterpart, Jean-Yves Le Drian - Press photo
CAIRO - 13 March 2020: Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry handed his French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian, Friday, a message from President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to French President Emmanuel Macron regarding the latest developments of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).
According to Foreign Ministry’s Spokesman Ahmed Hafez, handing the message took place during a meeting that took place in Paris.
During the meeting, Shoukry called on France and the EU countries to exert more efforts to push Ethiopia into signing the agreement on filling and operating the dam, with the aim of maintaining security and stability in the Horn of Africa region, the spokesman added.
The two sides discussed ways of fostering bilateral cooperation in different fields, as well as regional and international issues of common concern, the spokesman noted.
The top Egyptian diplomat lauded the distinguished level of cooperation between Cairo and Paris in various areas, asserting that Egypt looks forward to promoting strategic ties with France.
The pair agreed on the importance of continuing coordination and consultation in the fight against terrorism, especially in the light of Egypt's great efforts in this regard.
Egypt is rely on the support of international partners, including France to join international efforts to confront terrorism and stand against countries that sponsor and finance foreign terrorists, the spokesman quoted Shoukry as saying.
The two foreign ministers exchanged views on means of settling crises in the Middle East, notably the Libyan one.
Concerning the Libyan file, the two ministers agreed on the significance of keeping bilateral coordination to resolve the Libyan conflict through promoting the comprehensive political solution, combating terrorism and rejecting foreign interference in the North African country.
With regard to the Syrian crisis, Shoukry and Le Drian asserted their commitment to the political settlement in Syria, while preserving the country's unity and territorial integrity.
For his part, the French foreign minister expressed his appreciation of the key and central role played by Egypt to strengthen regional stability, underlining the need to elevate the distinct relations between the two countries to higher levels during the coming period.
Nearly week ago, Shoukry embarked on a tour of which he visited number of Arab and European countries to deliver Sisi’s message to several leaders regarding GERD.
On March 11, Bahrain’s King Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa affirmed his country’s solidarity with Egypt to ensure its legitimate Nile water rights, as Egypt and Ethiopia have been in a diplomatic conflict, especially recently, over the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.
In a meeting with Egyptian Foreign Minister Shoukry in Bahrain, King Hamad said he considers Egypt’s national security a main pillar of Arab security, Bahrain News Agency, the state’s agency, reported.
President Sisi also sent a message to Jordanian King Abdullah II on the recent stalemate between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia on GERD. The message was delivered by Shoukry.
"King Abdullah II expressed his country’s support to Egypt to preserve its water security," said the spokesman.
March 5, the Arab League Council voiced rejection of any infringement of Egypt’s historical rights to the waters of the River Nile.
This came at the end of the 153rd session of the Arab League Council, as it reaffirmed that Egypt’s water security is an integral part of Arab national security.
It issued a decision on the controversial Ethiopian dam, vowing support to Egypt’s historical rights to the river which provides it with over 90 percent of its water supply.
The council asserted that Ethiopia should comply with the principles of international law.