Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

North Africa

Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

North Africa

Article excerpt

Egypt-Iran Presidential Meeting

On Dec. 10, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak met with Iran's Mohammad Khatami on the sidelines of a U.N. technology summit in Geneva, AFP reported Dec. 13. The landmark meeting between the two countries' top leaders was the first since diplomatic ties were severed nearly 25 years ago. The two discussed the "historical affinities between the two nations" and agreed that bilateral relations should be promoted. Khatami told the Iranian news service IRNA on Dec. 12 that Mubarak's "viewpoints in such areas as Iraq and Palestine were close to those of Iran." Iran and Egypt severed diplomatic ties in 1980, a year after Cairo gave asylum to deposed Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and signed the U.S.-brokered Camp David peace accords with Israel. Iran, meanwhile, angered Egypt by naming a Tehran street after the assassin of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat. Relations were especially bad when Egypt supported Iraq during the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war. Since the 1990s, however, trade and other ties have improved. …

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