Trump, Egyptian President hold bilateral meeting at White House

World Today

President Donald Trump meets with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in the Oval Office of the White House, Tuesday, April 9, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

A warm welcome at the White House for Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi.

On the agenda: counterterrorism and regional security including the ongoing conflicts in Syria, Libya, the Middle East and Yemen.

CGTN’s Jim Spellman reports.

 “We have many things to discuss as you would imagine; military, trade, but I have to say that a lot of progress has been made in a lot of different ways in terms of terrorism and other things with Egypt. It’s really incredible,” said U.S. President Donald Trump.

The U.S. provides about $1.3 billion a year in military aid to Egypt-second only to Israel.

The visit comes amid growing concerns in Washington over closer Egyptian ties with Russia, including major arms purchases from Moscow. But it was all smiles in the Oval Office.

“All the credit goes to you Mister President. Thank you very much for your support on all fronts this is what we are seeking to promote bilateral relations in various fields. Political, economic, military, cultural and others,” said  President El-Sisi.

El-Sisi is also facing criticism over human rights violations – claims of torture and extrajudicial death sentences against political dissidents and concerns about a new Egyptian law that could allow Sisi to remain in power until 2034.

Trump didn’t mention those concerns but did focus on expanding bilateral trade.

“We do a lot of work together and I think we’ve never had a better relationship Egypt and the United States than we do right now,” Trump said.

The White House argues that efforts to help modernize Egypt’s economy will help create stability and peace in Egypt and throughout the region.