April 2, 2023

Sameh Shoukry will even go to Turkey, each visits signaling warming ties between the nations.

Egyptian Overseas Minister Sameh Shoukry has arrived in Damascus in what’s the first go to by a high Egyptian envoy to Syria since its civil struggle started in 2011 and one other signal of doable warming ties between President Bashar al-Assad and Arab states.

In line with the Syrian state information company (SANA), Shoukry was acquired at Damascus airport by his Syrian counterpart Faisal Mekdad on Monday.

Al-Assad has benefited from an outpouring of Arab help for Syria since February 6. earthquakes that killed greater than 50,000 folks there and in neighboring Turkey.

Earlier this month, Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi spoke with al-Assad by cellphone for the primary time on February 7.

On Sunday, a delegation of Arab parliamentary leaders, together with Egypt parliament’s Speaker Hanafy al-Gebali, met al-Assad To put in Damascus.

Earlier, following the earthquake, the international minister of Jordan, which as soon as backed the Syrian opposition, additionally visited Damascus for the primary time because the civil struggle started.

Syria was largely remoted from the remainder of the Arab world following al-Assad’s lethal crackdown towards protests that erupted towards his rule in 2011. The Arab League suspended Syria’s membership the identical yr, and lots of Arab nations pulled their envoys out of Damascus.

The United Arab Emirates, which started normalizing ties with al-Assad a number of years in the past, has poured assist into Syria because the earthquake. Saudi Arabia additionally despatched planes carrying assist to Syria, a primary in additional than a decade.

Washington has voiced opposition to any strikes towards rehabilitating or normalizing ties with al-Assad, citing his authorities’s brutality through the battle and the necessity to see progress towards a political resolution.

The earthquake killed at the very least 5,900 folks in Syria, the majority of them within the rebel-held northwest.

Relations with Turkey

In the meantime, Shoukry’s deliberate go to to Turkey additionally underscores a brand new thaw in Egypt’s ties with Ankara.

Diplomatic relations have been severed after el-Sisi, then the military chief, led the 2013 overthrow of democratically elected President Mohamed Morsi, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, who had loved Turkish help throughout his short-lived presidency.

Turkey has for years served as a refuge for opposition activists from Egypt, additional stoking tensions between the 2 regional powers.

Nevertheless, in recent times Ankara and Cairo have made efforts to fix ties. Turkey and Egypt held their first diplomatic talks in eight years in 2021.

In the course of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar in November, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan shook palms with el-Sisi for the primary time, which the Turkish chief described as step one to launch a brand new path in relations.

However, longstanding disagreements over the nations’ opposing roles in war-scarred Libya have impeded efforts to realize a full rapprochement till now.

Whereas diplomatic relations between Cairo and Ankara have usually been thorny, financial ties have continued unabated. The quantity of commerce has almost tripled from 2007 to 2020, in line with the Carnegie Center East Heart.

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