Egypt, Russia agree on two-state solution for Palestine

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, right, and Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry shake hands after their joint news conference following their talks in Moscow, Russia, Monday, June 24, 2019. (AP)
Updated 24 June 2019
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Egypt, Russia agree on two-state solution for Palestine

  • Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi has moved to increase military cooperation with Russia
  • The two nations foreign and defense ministers have held regular meetings

CAIRO: Egypt and Russia said on Monday that they agree on a two-state solution and the need to reach a comprehensive deal to the Palestinian issue.

Speaking during a joint press conference, Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said Moscow and Cairo have a common vision on a large number of regional issues.

He added that counter-terrorism must be treated with a comprehensive strategy.

His Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, said Moscow supports dialogue between the Arabs and Iran and wants to build confidence to establish security in the Arabian Gulf.

On Syria, Lavrov said: “We are concerned about trying to turn Syrian territory into a zone of conflict between Iran and Israel.”

He said that Russia stresses the need for dialogue and reject attempts to secede in Syria.

Meanwhile, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said Egypt was successfully fighting terrorism — an important step for the whole region — during talks with his Egyptian counterpart Mohamed Ahmed Zaki in Moscow on Monday.

“We are certain that neutralizing the extremist and terrorist groups operating in your country corresponds to the interests of the whole region,” Shoigu said. According to him, Egypt was “an example of stability in these tumultuous times for the whole Arab world.”

“Largely, this is a personal achievement of President (Abdel Fattah) El-Sisi and the Egyptian Armed Forces. We support the effort of the Egyptian leadership to combat terrorism and normalize the situation on the Sinai Peninsula,” the Defense Minister added.

Shoigu also pointed out “Egypt’s key role in resolving political and economic issues in North Africa and the Middle East.”

Talking about the regular meetings of the two countries' defense and foreign ministers an important part of bilateral cooperation. “The diplomats and the military of our countries have a great opportunity to discuss the burning issues of the current agenda,” the Russian Minister said.


Stena Impero operator says tanker’s crew safe and well

Updated 33 min 26 sec ago
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Stena Impero operator says tanker’s crew safe and well

  • ‘... they’re all okay and in good health and they’re getting good cooperation with the Iranians on board the vessel’

STOCKHOLM: All 23 crew on a British-flagged tanker seized last week by Iran in the Strait of Hormuz are safe and well, the vessel’s Swedish operator Stena Bulk said on Wednesday after speaking to them.

Iran said on Saturday it had seized the Stena Impero because it had collided with a fishing boat. Stena Bulk has said it has received no evidence of such a collision.

“We had direct contact with the crew on board the vessel last night by telephone and they’re all okay and in good health and they’re getting good cooperation with the Iranians on board,” the firm’s spokesman Pat Adamson said.

Its CEO Erik Hanell said he hoped Tuesday’s contact was “a first sign that we will soon see more positive progress from the Iranian authorities.”

Britain described the seizure as piracy and called on Monday for a European-led naval mission to ensure safe shipping through the Strait, a strategic waterway for oil transportation.

Adamson said the next step for the operator would be to try and get somebody on board to check up on the crew, but that he had no timeline for when the crew might be repatriated.

“We haven’t had any direct response from the Iranian authorities about visiting the vessel as yet but we hope we will have that soon,” he said.

“All the appropriate governments and embassies are supporting and helping us.”