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Cyprus hails Egypt among its closest allies

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Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades discussed regional cooperation on Friday with his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, describing Egypt as “one of our closest friends and a strategic partner”.

Cyprus-Egypt relations have blossomed in recent years mainly founded on an alliance to make the East Med a stable energy hub also requiring military and political cooperation.

Anastasiades tweeted he had a “constructive” telephone conversation with President al-Sisi.

“During these challenging times, the need to stay in contact is even more important. Our security, stability & prosperity are interconnected.”

He said the coronavirus pandemic has shown the need to strengthen close cooperation and coordination between states to deal with asymmetric threats against societies, institutions and economies.

A statement by deputy government spokesperson Panayiotis Sentonas said President Anastasiades “also expressed his satisfaction for the arrangement of a flight from Egypt to Cyprus which will repatriate Cypriot citizens in the coming days.”

The two leaders also discussed extensively developments in the Eastern Mediterranean, as well as other issues to do with regional security and cooperation, Sentonas said.

As part of regional energy cooperation, in January 2019, seven countries – Egypt, Greece, Cyprus, Israel, Jordan, Palestine and Italy – launched the East Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF).

Cairo was chosen as the new forum’s headquarters and its charter was signed this year as a step towards it becoming an international body.