PM Modi meets Egyptian President, says Egypt a natural bridge between Asia and Africa


New Delhi: India and Egypt today decided to significantly step up their defence and security cooperation to effectively deal with twin challenges of terrorism and radicalisation as Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi held talks covering the entire expanse of ties.

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Meanwhile Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that radicalisation and increasing violence is a threat not just to India and Egypt but also to other countries across the region. 

Further Modi, described Egypt as a natural bridge between Asia and Africa. Addressing a joint press conference with Al-Sisi, the PM said: "In this context, we agree to further our defence and security engagements…" Modi said adding that the two countries have decided to expand defence trade, training, combat capacity building, and greater information exchange to combat terrorism.

The two countries are also cooperating in dealing with emerging challenges in cyber security, Modi said. Modi praised Egypt`s role during its current term at the UN Security Council and welcomed Egypt`s partnership for the next week`s G-20 meet, which is to be held in Hangzou, China. 

"India appreciates the good work that Egypt has been doing during its current term in UNSC. Our decision to consult more closely on regional and global issues both at the UN and outside will benefit our common interests," Modi said. 

Following delegation-level talks here, Modi said: "As ancient and proud civilisations with rich cultural heritage, we (India and Egypt) decided to facilitate more people-to-people ties and cultural exchanges”.

Sisi arrived here on Thursday on a three-day official visit to India at the invitation of President Pranab Mukherjee. External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj called on him in the evening, and during the meeting, Sisi described ties between Egypt and India as old and "very resilient".

Sisi will be hosted for a banquet by President Mukherjee on Friday evening. This is the first presidential visit from Egypt to India since the visit of then President Mohamed Morsi in 2013.

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