President Abdel Fattah El Sisi met Saturday Chairman of the Sudanese Transitional Sovereign Council Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, soon after the plane of the Egyptian leader touched down at Khartoum International Airport, at the beginning of a brief visit to the neighbouring country.
President Sisi first held a separate meeting with Chairman al-Burhan, before the Egyptian and Sudanese delegations joined in.
Al-Burhan said relations between Egypt and Sudan have their own peculiarity, thanks to the fact that the two states are bound by the same fate.
He expressed appreciation for Egypt’s support to his country in the face of crises as Sudan tried to get itself out of a list of international terrorism state sponsors.
“These positions are just a reflection of historical and strategic relations between the two countries,” Chairman al-Burhan said, adding that Sudan has hopes that Egyptian support would continue at regional and international forums.
The Sudanese official noted that his country looks forward to enhancing cooperation with Egypt in all fields, including political, economic, security and military fields.
President Sisi praised close relations between Cairo and Khartoum, noting that these close relations reflect the presence of a political will in decision-making circles in the two capitals for enhancing co-operation in all strategic fields of common interest.
He said Egypt would maintain support to Sudan in all fields.
“We will also move ahead with strengthening our strategic partnership, which is based on mutual respect and co-operation to serve the best interests of our two countries,” President Sisi said.
He added that Egypt would work to make relations with Sudan a model for comprehensive development partnerships and economic integration.
President Sisi said Egypt would continue to back efforts aimed at bringing about peace, stability and development in Sudan.
“This derives from our belief that Egypt’s and Sudan’s security and stability are inseparable,” the president said, adding that Egyptian support to the neighbouring country is a basic strategy for Cairo.
Talks between President Sisi and Chairman al-Burhan tackled means of enhancing bilateral relations at all levels.
They also covered a number of regional and international issues of mutual interest, especially developments on the Sudanese-Ethiopian border and Sudan’s latest moves to assert its control and sovereignty over its eastern border with Ethiopia, Egypt’s Presidency Spokesman Ambassador Bassam Radi said.
He added that these moves come within the framework of Sudan’s abidance by international treaties on borders and its continual pursuit for asserting its sovereignty of its borders in a peaceful manner and without any recourse to violence.
Talks between President Sisi and Chairman al-Buhran also dwelt on developments in the Horn of Africa and east African region, Ambassador Radi said.
He added that the talks reflected the existence of understanding on means of dealing with these files, especially in relation to helping Africans confront the challenges of their continent.
The president and Chairman al-Buhran agreed to intensify contacts and meetings between officials from Egypt and Sudan with the aim of increasing coordination on regional developments, Ambassador Radi said.
Nile dam issue
They agreed on the need for the highest degree of coordination between Egypt and Sudan in this critical stage in this file, given Egypt’s and Sudan’s position as downstream states, which means that they would be directly affected by the dam.
They expressed rejection of unilateral moves that aim to impose any status quos in this regard and attempts by any state to entwine itself around the resources of the Blue Nile.
President Sisi and Chairman al-Burhan called for intensifying bilateral, regional and international efforts aiming at reaching a comprehensive agreement on the rules of filling the Ethiopian dam reservoir and the operation of the dam.
This agreement, they said, has to be legally binding and serve the interests of Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia. It must also trim the negative effects of the Ethiopian dam on Egypt and Sudan.
President Sisi and Chairman al-Burhan also called for backing a Sudanese proposal for forming an international panel made up of the African Union presidency, the United States, the European Union, and the United Nations to broker a settlement of the Ethiopian dam issue.
While in Khartoum, President Sisi also met Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and Deputy Head of the Sudanese Transitional Sovereign Council Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo.
The Sudanese premier highlighted that there is an opportunity for deeper co-operation between Cairo and Khartoum.
Sudan, he said, is keen on making the environment more conducive to an increase in co-operation in all development and strategic fields.
President Sisi told Prime Minister Hamdok that Egypt was also keen on strengthening co-operation with Sudan in all fields.
The Egyptian leader reiterated the same message during his meeting with Dagalo.
He said Egypt was keen on cementing its co-operation with Sudan, especially in the security, military and economic fields, Ambassador Radi said.