Morsi to visit Tehran in historic trip
Morsi’s visit to Tehran may mark a diplomatic thaw between the two countries. AP PhotoEgypt’s President Mohamed Morsi will attend a summit in Iran later this month, a presidential official said Aug. 18, the first such trip for an Egyptian leader since relations with Tehran deteriorated decades ago.
The official MENA news agency quoted a source in the presidency as saying Morsi will attend the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Tehran on Aug. 30-31 at which Egypt will transfer the bloc’s rotating leadership to Iran, according to Agence France-Presse.
The visit could mark a thaw between the two countries after years of enmity, especially since Egypt signed its 1979 peace treaty with Israel and Iran underwent its Islamic revolution. Under ousted president Hosni Mubarak, several attempts were by trade ministers and business leaders to bolster economic ties. But they stirred objections from the foreign ministry and intelligence circles, officials said at the time.
“This really signals the first response to a popular demand and a way to increase the margin of maneuver for Egyptian foreign policy in the region,” the Associated Press quoted political scientist Mustafa Kamel el-Sayyed as saying. “Morsi’s visits ... show that Egypt’s foreign policy is active again in the region.”