Sunday, June 19, 2011

'Pressure on Egypt impeding Iran ties'

Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi

Source: Press TV

Iran's foreign minister has expressed Tehran's determination to bolster ties with Egypt, noting that the delay in the resumption of relations is due to foreign pressure on Cairo.

Ali Akbar Salehi said on Saturday that Tehran and Cairo are intent on restoring and expanding relations, but foreign political pressures on Egypt have deferred the procedure, Fars news agency reported.

The Iranian foreign minister said that both countries have announced readiness to further develop bilateral diplomatic ties, but apparently constraints have been imposed on Cairo by foreign sources.

“We understand the circumstances faced by Egypt,” Salehi said, adding, “The relations will eventually resume between the two countries, but Egyptians are interested in taking more time to manage [the political situation] in efforts to eliminate the political pressures.”

In a meeting with his Egyptian counterpart at the 16th conference of foreign ministers of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in Indonesia in May, Salehi called for the normalization of Tehran-Cairo ties, reiterating that improved relations between the two key countries would benefit the entire region.

Egypt's Foreign Minister Nabil al-Arabi recently said his country is interested in opening a new chapter in relations with all countries, adding that the nation's future parliament would discuss enhancement of diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republic.

Tehran severed ties with Egypt after Cairo signed the 1978 Camp David Accords with the Israeli regime and offered asylum to Iran's deposed monarch Mohammad-Reza Pahlavi.

In late January, Egyptians staged weeks of massive protests in major cities, particularly in Cairo, which led to the ouster of Mubarak from power on February 11 -- coinciding with the 32nd anniversary of the Islamic Revolution of Iran in 1979.

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