Egypt’s President Mohamed Mursi is set to meet with China’s president at the end of this month before he heads to Tehran, the first visit of an Egyptian leader to Iran since the Islamic revolution in 1979.
President Mohamed Mursi is set to visit China 27 August for a three-day visit in which he will meet with Chinese President Hiu Jinato, state-run Al Ahram English website reported.
The visit comes in response to an invitation by the Chinese president. The two leaders plan to talk about key issues facing the Arab world, such as the Syrian crisis and the Palestinian issue, but also ways of boosting Chinese investment in Egypt.
After China, Egypt’s Islamist President Mohamed Mursi will visit Iran to attend the Non-Aligned Movement meetings on Aug. 30, Egyptian state news agency MENA said.
Egypt and Iran had had no diplomatic relations since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, with relations escalating in 1980 with Egypt’s recognition of Israel.
In June, Mursi denied giving an interview to Iran’s Fars news agency which had quoted him as expressing interest in restoring the long-severed ties between the countries. Mursi’s spokesperson said last week the interview never took place and that Mursi would file a lawsuit against the news agency, according to Reuters.
Iran has hailed the victory of Mursi, who resigned from the Muslim Brotherhood when he was elected in June, as an “Islamic Awakening”. Mursi, however, is struggling to assure Egypt’s Western allies cautious at the prospect of Islamist rule, and Gulf states that are deeply suspicious of Iranian influence, according to Zawya.
Egypt is the current head of the Non Aligned Movement, founded to advocate the causes of the developing world, is set to hand over to Iran in the Tehran meeting.