Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi affirmed on Sunday that Egypt will not allow any threat to Somalia and its security, rejecting an agreement recently signed between Somaliland and Ethiopia regarding the acquisition of a port in the Red Sea.
During a joint press conference with Somali President, Hassan Sheikh Mahmoud at the Ettihadiya Presidential Palace in Cairo, Sisi said: “Egypt supports Somalia, and refuses to interfere in its affairs and undermine its sovereignty,” stressing that the agreement between Somaliland and Ethiopia is not acceptable to anyone.
He stressed Egypt’s support for Somalia in its fight against terrorism, and will continue to develop relations.
Sisi said: “Egypt will not allow its brothers to be threatened, especially if they ask it to intervene.”
“The Somali government succeeded during the last period in lifting the ban on the supply of weapons and equipment imposed on Somalia since 1991,” he said.
“We are always ready to develop our relationship with our brothers in Africa and the Arab countries, and Somalia is an African and Arab country like Egypt, and we are also ready to develop and move in a positive way and with a strong will in all available fields.”
“We always say that Egypt does not interfere in the affairs of countries, and seeks cooperation for construction, development and reconstruction,” he continued.
“There is an important subject that we talked about, related to the issue of the agreement that was concluded between the Somaliland region and Ethiopia regarding finding a port on the Red Sea, and we talked about that we in Egypt had a position that was recorded immediately, following the issue with a statement by the Foreign Ministry rejecting interference in the affairs of Somalia or harming its independence and territorial integrity, and rejecting this agreement,” Sisi stressed.
He added: “I say that cooperation and development are much better than anything else. My message now is not to Egypt or Somalia, but to the Ethiopians: You obtain facilities with brothers in Somalia or in Djibouti or Eritrea, something available through traditional means. You having the opportunity to benefit from the ports in these countries is something that no one rejects, but trying to jump on any of the lands so that you can control those lands in one way or another, such as the agreement with Somaliland, certainly no one agrees with it.”
Sisi said that: “Somalia is an Arab country, and it has rights in accordance with the Arab League Charter to jointly defend it against any threat.”
The president emphasized that his speech is not meant to be a threat, but is made so that everyone understands that Egypt will not allow anyone to threaten or harm Somalia.
“No one tries to test Egypt or threaten its brothers, especially if they ask us to stand with them,” he added.
President Sisi assured that Egypt only aims for construction, development and reconstruction, reassuring the Somali President that Egypt stands alongside Somalia.
He urged everyone to cooperate and find a language for dialogue away from threatening or compromising the security and independence of other countries.