Egypt’s president will head to US in September
CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi will visit the United States in September to attend a meeting of the U.N. General Assembly, his first trip there as the country’s head of state, the country’s official news agency reported Wednesday.
MENA said el-Sissi also will attend a United Nations environmental summit on Sept. 25 and deliver a speech. It added that he is expected to hold meetings with other world leaders — but it did not say if he’ll meet with U.S. President Barack Obama.
Egypt’s relations with U.S. have been strained since the downfall of one-time ally Hosni Mubarak in the country’s 2011 uprising.
U.S. has refused to fund all of the $1.5 billion in annual military and economic aid that Washington usually sends to Cairo after the military ouster of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi last year.
El-Sissi reportedly turned down a previous invitation to attend an African-American summit in U.S., with Egyptian daily newspapers saying it was reaction to receiving a belated invitation from the White House. Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab represent el-Sissi at the summit.
U.S. has supported Egypt’s role in mediating the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, though American officials have criticized Egypt and United Arab Emirates after saying they conducted airstrikes targeting Islamist-aligned militias in Libya. Egypt has denied having its forces fighting in Libya, while officials in the United Arab Emirates have declined to comment.