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Ahmadinejad to Visit Cairo, Meet Morsi

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will soon visit Cairo in order strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 1/21/2013, 5:45 AM

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad
Flash 90

Egypt under the Muslim Brotherhood is continuing to get closer to Iran.

According to a Sunday report in PressTV, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will soon visit Cairo in order strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries.

Khalid al-Said Ibrahim Amari, identified in the report as the head of Egypt’s Interest Section in Tehran, said that Iran’s president would visit Egypt on February 6 and 7, at the official invitation of Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi.

Ahmadinejad will attend the 12th summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, according to PressTV. The Iranian president is also expected to hold talks with Morsi.

The presidents of Iran and Egypt will address the current regional and international issues, Amari said.

The Egyptian official also stated that if Iran and the six major world powers (P5+1) are willing to proceed with negotiations in Cairo, the Egyptian government would be ready to host the talks.

Egypt supports Iran’s right to achieve peaceful nuclear energy and believes that outstanding issues pertaining to Tehran’s nuclear energy activities should be settled through negotiations, Amari said.

Iran and the P5+1 (Russia, China, France, Britain, the U.S. and Germany) have held several rounds of talks, with the main focus being Iran’s nuclear program. The last round of negotiations was held in Moscow in June. The talks failed as Tehran rejected P5+1 calls for it to scale back its nuclear enrichment activities, while asking for relief from sanctions that in 2012 began to bite.

There have been no formal diplomatic ties between Egypt and Iran since 1979, when then Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin signed a peace treaty between their two countries. This caused Iran to cut off ties with Egypt.

However, Morsi, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, has been getting closer to the Islamic Republic.

Morsi visited Iran in August, where he met Ahmadinejad. However, Morsi's spokesman later said the meeting did not address the issues of bilateral relations or raising the level of diplomatic representation between the two countries.

Ahmadinejad and Morsi described the two countries as “strategic allies” during the meeting.

Egypt recently indicated it also plans to pursue a relationship with Hizbullah, Iran’s terror proxy in Lebanon.