CAIRO: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s presence in Saudi Arabic at the same time as Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi is “just a coincidence,” Sisi said in a television interview Saturday night.
Speaking to the Arabiya Channel, Sisi added that Egypt’s foreign policy during the past 18 months has been “stable,” and not provocative.
Sisi said that Egypt needs other countries to respect its own policy, and not to interfere in it, “the same as we do not interfere.”
President Sisi is scheduled to make his first official visit to Saudi Arabia under the rule of new King Salman bin Abdelaziz Sunday to discuss economic and political issues, including the situation in Yemen, according to a Thursday presidential statement.
Erdoğan arrived to Saudi Arabia Saturday, and is scheduled to stay until Monday meeting King Salman, and discuss a number of topics between the two countries.
Relations between Turkey and Egypt countries became strained immediately after former president Mohamed Morsi was ousted July 3, 2013 after mass protests calling for the end of his regime. In response to Erdoğan describing Morsi’s ouster as a “coup,” Egypt downgraded bilateral diplomatic relations, and declared Turkish ambassador Hussein Botsali a persona non grata.
During an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat Thursday, Sisi said that strained relations with Qatari and Turkish governments would not affect the relations among the peoples of the three countries.
“Since I took office, Egypt has not issued a single official statement that offends or abuses the Qatari or Turkish governments. Egypt abides by the Riyadh Supplementary Agreement, announced by Saudi King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz earlier in November urging conflict resolution between Egypt and Qatar,” Sisi added.