FILE - Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades (L) and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi shake hands at the Presidential Palace in Nicosia, Cyprus November 20, 2017 - REUTERS/Yiannis Kourtoglou
CAIRO – 29 May 2020: Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades said he held a “constructive” phone call with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi on Friday, calling Egypt a “strategic partner” and one of Cyprus’ “closest friends.”
Anastasiades affirmed the need for cooperation with Egypt during the current stage, calling it “even more important” than earlier.
Anastasiades has praised Egypt’s efforts in achieving stability and combating terrorism and illegal immigration, in his phone call with Sisi, the Egyptian Presidency said in a statement on Friday.
Anastasiades also praised Egypt’s vital role in preserving regional stability.
Sisi and Anastasiades discussed issues of mutual concern, including energy security, within the framework of the EastMed Gas Forum.
They also discussed the efforts exerted to fight the novel coronavirus and contain its health, economic and social implications. Both leaders affirmed the need to enhance multilateral cooperation in this regard.
Sisi and Anastasiades also reviewed developments in the Libyan situation. They called for intensifying coordination in this regard, especially through supporting the relevant international efforts, applying the outcome of the Berlin conference and rejecting foreign interference.
The two presidents also discussed a number of regional issues and called for fostering bilateral cooperation between Egypt and Cyprus and trilateral cooperation with Greece.
Earlier in May, Egypt’s minster of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry held a teleconference meeting with his Greek, Cypriot, French and Emirati counterparts as they discussed the latest worrying developments in the Eastern Mediterranean, as well as a number of regional crises that threaten peace and stability in this region.
According to a Monday statement, the ministers stressed the strategic importance of enhancing and intensifying their political consultations, and commended the outcome of the Cairo meeting on January 8th, 2020, for enhancing security and stability in the Eastern Mediterranean, and expressed their deepest concern over the current escalation and continuous provocative actions in the Eastern Mediterranean.
The Ministers also denounced the ongoing Turkish illegal activities in the Cypriot Exclusive Economic Zone and its territorial waters, as they represent a clear violation of international law as reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. It is the sixth attempt by Turkey in less than a year to illegally conduct drilling operations in Cyprus’ maritime zones.
During their meeting, the Ministers also condemned the escalation of Turkey’s violations of the Greek national airspace, including over flights of inhabited areas and territorial waters in violation of International Law.
They urged Turkey to fully respect the sovereignty and the sovereign rights of all States in their maritime zones in the Eastern Mediterranean.