It gives me pleasure to welcome you today as an honorable guest during your official visit to Arab Republic of Egypt. It comes within the framework of our constant interest to exchange perspectives and views on ways to develop and deepen aspects of bilateral cooperation between our two friendly countries in various fields, as well as consultations on regional and international issues of mutual interest.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Egypt and Greece share deeply rooted distinctive bonds of friendship throughout history. Communications between the Pharaonic and Greek civilizations, that outstandingly contributed to the development of human civilization through the ages, began three thousand years ago.
The past years have witnessed a remarkable increase in joint cooperation and coordination on several topics and issues at various political, economic and military levels. This has been achieved whether at the bilateral level or within the framework of Egypt-Cyprus-Greece tripartite cooperation mechanism, in a way that made this unique cooperation a role model in achieving cooperation and integration regionally.
I reviewed with His Excellency the Prime Minister the various aspects of bilateral cooperation. we agreed on the importance of achieving a qualitative leap in all aspects of relations between our two countries especially increasing the value of trade exchange, encouraging the flow of Greek investments and activating cooperation in energy sector, whether with regard to electrical interconnection, or in the field of natural gas. Moreover, we tackled supporting tourism cooperation, benefitting from the accumulated experiences of the two countries in this important sector, and working to resume the movement of cruise ships between our ports as soon as possible.
Our meeting today is an important opportunity for exchanging visions and coordinating positions on regional issues of mutual interest. In this respect, I affirmed to His Excellency the Prime Minister the firm Egyptian position concerning the Eastern Mediterranean region that is based on the need of all countries to respect the international law and the Charter of the United Nations; especially the principles of non- interference in internal affairs, in addition to respecting the sovereignty and territorial water of the countries, stressing on our solidarity with Greece against any practices that will violate its sovereignty.
In this regard, I agreed with His Excellency Prime Minister on the importance of promoting the triangular cooperation mechanism among Egypt, Cyprus and Greece for further political coordination and technical cooperation. Moreover, we agreed upon the necessity of working on achieving the maximum benefit from this mechanism that links our countries, particularly owing to the uniqueness of this relation and the convergence of common interest towards achieving security and stability in the region.
The talks have tackled the latest developments of the Palestinian cause. In this vein, I emphasized to the Greek Prime Minister the importance of exerting concerted international efforts in order to provide the necessary support to the "Gaza" Strip which has been badly inflicted by the recent Israeli attacks, while taking into consideration Egypt's initiative to reconstruct "Gaza" in full coordination with the Palestinian Authority, not to mention working on getting the Palestinian and Israeli parties back to the negotiating table to reach a final settlement in accordance with the resolutions of international legitimacy.
We have also discussed the latest developments of the Libyan file, where we agreed to support our Libyan brothers in holding the elections on its due date at the end of this year and to overcome any obstacles that might prevent the holding of the elections on time. We have, also, emphasized the importance of the withdrawal of all foreign forces and mercenaries from the Libyan territory without procrastination and the dismantling of the armed militias in a way that guarantees the return of the Libyan lands to its people and the restoration of its sovereignty, territorial integrity and stability.
His Excellency Prime Minister also took note of the outcome of the tripartite negotiations on the "Renaissance Dam" issue, stressing the importance of speeding up a binding legal agreement to fill and operate the Ethiopian "Renaissance Dam" and the need for the international community to play a serious role in this issue in order to preserve the stability of the region.
Dear Prime Minister,
I welcome you again in Cairo and I look forward to more cooperation and coordination between both countries in the coming period that will result in welfare and prosperity of both countries.