Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has called for a strong alliance between Iran and Egypt in the region to counter enemy threats.
“If Iran and Egypt closed ranks, international enemies of humanity could not inflict any harm upon our nations,” Ahmadinejad said in a meeting with Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi on the sidelines of the 12th summit of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Cairo on Tuesday.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran is ready to increase relations with Egypt in all sectors without any restrictions. The Iranian nation opens up its arms and the way for the development and progress of the Egyptian nation,” he added.
“From a historical standpoint, in case Iran and Egypt stay together, both will emerge winners and that would benefit not only the two nations, but also the entire region,” said Ahmadinejad.
The Iranian president noted that Iran and Egypt need to coordinate their positions and settle the ongoing crisis in Syria.
He also stated that Tehran and Cairo would be able to contribute to finding a resolution to the Palestinian issue.
Morsi, for his part, underscored the need for broader cooperation between Iran and Egypt, saying Tehran-Cairo relations are significant and influential both in the region and in the world.
He called for cooperation between Iran and Egypt to find a solution to the spiraling crisis in Syria.
“I believe that the Syrian problem could not be resolved without Iran and Iran’s efforts in this regard are prioritized,” Morsi added.
“…We have no doubt that Iran is sincerely endeavoring to resolve the problems in Syria and other nations. Hence, we stress cooperation with Iran in this field,” he added.
Syria has been experiencing unrest since March 2011.
“Iran and Egypt can expand their cooperation in different sectors and the world will definitely witness a new form of Iran-Egypt cooperation. Iran and Egypt have always sought peace, progress and security because we believe that our nations are entitled to progress,” the Egyptian leader said.
Ahmadinejad arrived in Cairo on Tuesday for the first visit by an Iranian president in nearly three decades, suggesting a thaw in frosty ties.
Iran severed ties with Egypt after Cairo signed the 1978 Camp David Accord with Israel and granted asylum to Iran’s deposed monarch Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.
Morsi visited Iran for the 16th Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit in August 2012, which was the first trip by an Egyptian president to Tehran since the victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979.