Egypt’s politics digest Oct. 20: Sisi meets with NHCR’s High Commissioner Thursday; Egypt helps evacuate injured, elderly Syrians of Aleppo
Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi during his interview with BBC

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Sisi meets with NHCR’s High Commissioner Thursday

President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi will meet with NHCR’s High Commissioner Filippo Grandi who is paying Egypt a two-day visit during which he discusses the refugee situation in Egypt, the Middle East and North Africa bon Thursday.

Grandi will sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Minister of Health Ahmed Imad Eddin, whereby UNHCR provides high-level medical equipment for both Egyptians and refugees residing in Egypt, Youm7 reported.

The High Commissioner will also sign another MoU with the Arab League Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit, to promote competent Commission work program of protection concerning displacement and forced people, addressing human trafficking, and migration issues for children and women.


Rafah border crossing re-opens for 2nd day

The Egyptian-Palestinian border crossing of Rafah re-opens for the second day on a raw early Thursday in both directions to allow for the passage of urgent humanitarian cases, sick people and permit holders, Youm7 reported.

President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi has ordered to open the crossing for two days from both directions on Oct. 19-22 after it has been previously opened on Oct. 15 and 16.

A total of 961 passengers crossed the border on Wednesday; 624 travelers crossed into the Egyptian side, while 337 others entered into the Palestinian territories.

The crossing was only opened exceptionally a few times since a major militant attack in North Sinai’s Sheikh Zewuid that killed some 27 military personnel in October 2014. The Egyptian authorities have said in a number of occasions that Hamas is implicated in the attacks.

The Gaza Strip has six border crossings with Israel and only Rafah crossing was the only entrance gate for the Palestinians in the strip since Israel has imposed blockade on the strip in 2007. So many of Palestinians be stranded in Egyptian airports and other Palestinian patients could be stranded in Gaza waiting for the border reopening for receiving medical care in the Egyptian hospitals.


Egypt helps evacuate injured, elderly Syrians of Aleppo: Foreign Ministry

Egypt, via the Egyptian mission in Damascus, coordinated with the United Nations bodies and managed to evacuate the injured and elderly people from Syria’s Aleppo, said Egyptian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Ahmed Abu Zeid in a statement on Thursday.

The mission also has helped to deliver humanitarian aid to the devastated areas in the city, he added in the statement.

“The Egyptian embassy in Damascus has received the approval of the Syrian government for the Egyptian endeavor, and that a visit is currently being organized for the Egyptian Charge D’Affaires in Damascus, Counselor Mohamed Tharwat, to Aleppo to oversee the evacuation of the injured. In addition, Egypt continues to work on mediation efforts aiming to secure delivery of humanitarian aid to devastated areas in Aleppo,” he said.


Egypt welcomes ‘cessation of hostilities’ in Yemen

Egypt welcomed the 73-hour ceasefire announced in Yemen between Saudi-led Arab military coalition and Iran-backed Houthis rebels after being announced by United Nations Special Envoy Ould Cheikh Ahmed, said Egyptian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Ahmed Abu Zeid in a statement on Thursday.

Per the “cessation of hostilities,” all military operations and activities will be suspended to allow access of humanitarian aid to Yemeni civilians nationwide.

“Egypt looked forward to the commitment of all parties to this truce, including opening the way for the resumption of negotiations to reach a solution for stability and security for the people of the brotherly Yemeni people,” the statement read.


Former Islamist Morsi met with Israeli Intelligence agent in 2012: leaked document

Former Islamist President Mohamed Morsi has met with an agent from the Israeli intelligence service (Mossad) on June 15, 2012, according to a leaked document, of which Youm7 got a copy on Thursday.

According to the document, the meeting has been held in Cairo after Morsi got an approval from the former Supreme Guide of the Muslim Brotherhood Mohamed Badei.

Morsi has affirmed that Egypt has no objection to establish diplomatic relations with Tel Aviv in accordance with the signed agreements between the two sides, the document revealed. Morsi also pledged Egypt would not stand behind any hostile action against Israel, as well would intervene with Hamas to prevent it from launching any attacks against Israel.

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