Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Egypt: Aboul Gheit holds first round of the Egyptian-Japanese strategic dialogue with his Japanese Counterpart

Foreign Minister, Ahmed Aboul Gheit held the first round of the Egyptian-Japanese strategic dialogue with his Japanese Counterpart Mr. Hirofumi Nakasone, on May 5th, 2009, stated the Spokesman for the Foreign Ministry.

The Spokesman outlined that both Ministers expressed their appreciation to the progress achieved on the bilateral relations during the past period which was marked by the signature of an agreement for establishing Egyptian-Japanese Information and Technology University in March 2009 in Cairo, the first Japanese university to be established outside Japan. In addition to the achieved increment at the commercial exchange during the past 2 years with over 50% annually which coincide with the shrink of commercial deflation Egypt suffered from within this framework.

Aboul Gheit reviewed an illustration from the Japanese Minister on his visit to Tehran, and urged the Japanese side to invest its good relations with Iran in the advise of altering its negative attitude in the regional arena and stop intervening in the different affairs of the Arab region, particularly the struggle and tension areas, said the Spokesman.

The Spokesman mentioned that a major part of the strategic dialogue with Japan focused on issues of disarmament and non-proliferation. The Japanese Minister expressed his country’s support to the Egyptian efforts aiming to revive President Mubarak’s initiative on declaring the Middle East as weapons of mass destruction free zone, benefiting from the international concern, especially the western, regarding the Iranian nuclear programme. Aboul Gheit expressed Egypt’s support to the Japanese Foreign Minister initiative announced on April 27th, 2009, which compromises of 11 articles to free the world from nuclear weapons.

The Spokesman added that the strategic dialogue also tackled viewpoints exchange regarding the situation in the Middle East in general, particularly in light of the expected approaches of the new Israeli Government and possible settlement horizons. Both sides affirmed the importance to accelerate the Palestinian situation settlement on the basis of the two-state solution and the establishment of the Palestinian state. The dialogue also discussed the Egyptian views on the situation in Sudan and the International Criminal Court memorandum regarding the Sudanese President.

Aboul Gheit discussed with Mr. Nakasone the Somali issue developments and reviewed efforts of both countries to achieve security and stability in Somalia. In this regard, both sides exchanged viewpoints regarding the most appropriate means to combat the piracy phenomenon in Aden Gulf off the Somali coasts, as Japan sent two destroyers and established operation centers in Yemen and Djibouti for this cause.

Aboul Gheit got acquainted with an assessment from the Japanese side on the field situations in Pakistan and Afghanistan, in light of the Egyptian and Japanese keenness on the developments in these two countries, as well as its impact on the international security and peace.

The Spokesman said that the Egyptian Minister showed interest in getting acquainted with the Japanese vision on the situations in east Asia, as well as Tokyo’s assessment to the latest developments following North Korea launching a rocket with a satellite put into the orbit on April 5th, 2009 and the resulted tension increase in the Korean peninsula and east Asia in general.

Aboul Gheit was also keen on knowing Japan’s administration method in dealing with the global financial crisis and its repercussions on the global economy, including the Japanese economy, particularly in light of Japan being the world’s second biggest economy as well as its membership at the G8 and G20.

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