This Day (Lagos)

26 March 2004

Egypt Remains Committed to Africa, Says Envoy

Fct — The Egyptian Ambassador to Nigeria, His Excellency Moneim Talaat, has re-affirmed the commitment of his country to the course of Africa and denied suggestions that Egypt has shifted her foreign policy focus away from the continent.

In a statement made available to THISDAY, the Ambassador noted that an earlier report about his meeting with Vice-President Atiku Abubakar was misrepresentative of his country's foreign policy position on Africa. He said: "The meeting tackled a group of Egyptian proposals and fresh projects that aim to further promote and upgrade bilateral relations. They were fully supported by the Vice President. Any of them, along with existing manifestations, would only indicate and manifest the Egyptian strong and continuing commitment to Africa."

He therefore stressed that "the Egyptian commitment to Africa remains invariable, only the means differed," adding that the difference in approach was necessitated by "the current challenge of economic and social development."

The envoy said the current approach being employed by his country towards Africa focused on technical assistance and cooperation of which human resources development takes priority.

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