For the second time since taking the throne, seven months after his first visit, Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman arrived in Cairo on Monday for a two-day visit.
In March 2018, Prince Salman visited Cairo for the first time since his appointment as Crown Prince. The visit included the signing of four bilateral agreements between the two countries following a formal talks session.
The two countries signed a cooperation agreement on environmental protection and pollution reduction between the Egyptian and Saudi ministries of environment, as well as an agreement to establish an Egyptian-Saudi investment fund and an executive program for joint cooperation.
The march visit also saw the Crown Prince and President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi visit some major national projects at the Suez Canal, go on a maritime tour in the waterway, a visit to the New Ismailia City and attending the inauguration of al-Fursan Resort, west of the Suez Canal.
In a historic move, the Crown Prince visited the Cathedral of St. Mark in Abbasia, where he met with Pope Tawadros II and church leaders. He also visited and inaugurated restoration work for the al-Azhar Mosque with Sisi and the Grand Sheikh of Azhar, Ahmed al-Tayyeb; the work began in 2014 at the expense of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques at a cost of LE30 million.
The second visit will include a round of talks with President Sisi to discuss the bilateral relations between the two countries and ways to strengthen them in various fields, according to presidential spokesman Bassam Rady.
Rady said that the talks will discuss political issues of mutual interest in the framework of the strategic partnership between Cairo and Riyadh.
A statement by Saudi Ambassador to Egypt, Osama bin Ahmed Naqli, said that the visit of Prince Salman to Cairo for the second time in a year reflects the depth and strength of relations between the two countries, and demonstrates the volume of cooperation between them.
He stressed that the strategic partnership between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and Egypt aims to spread love and peace, with a unified vision that serves the interests of the two countries, both official and public.
Media host and writer Emad Eddin Adib said that President Sisi received the Crown Prince of KSA upon arrival at Cairo International Airport, to show support for KSA amid the storm of controversy over the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the consulate of KSA in Istanbul.
During a phone-in with the talk show “al-Hekaya” (The Story), on MBC, on Monday, Adib said that the visit confirms that the “alliance of moderation” between Egypt and Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain is “strong and continuous:”, evidenced by the strong participation of these countries in the investment conference in Riyadh, as well as in the “Arab Shield 1” maneuvers.
He pointed out that the first visits for the Crown Prince were to the coalition countries to emphasize strength in the face of blackmailing attempts by Turkey, and the continuity of Arab positions on some issues such as the Qatar boycott.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm