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Hariri after meeting with Sisi: There is no room for neutrality in the fight against extremism

BEIRUT |, with agencies - March 09, 2015, 13h36
Photo: National News Agency
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi received today Former Prime Minister Saad Hariri at the Ittihadiah Palace in Cairo, in the presence of former Minister Bassem Sabeh and Premier Hariri’s advisor Ghattas Khoury.
After the meeting, Premier Hariri said: “I had the honor to meet with President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi who assumes the responsibility of leading Egypt with courage, patience and wisdom. I reiterated the condolences of the Lebanese people for the martyrs killed by terrorism and confirmed our support to Egypt in the face of the forces of evil and extremism.”

He added: “We are in the same boat, facing an enemy of religion, values, and Arab and Islamic civilization. There is no room for neutrality in this confrontation. We are on the side of Arab and Islamic moderation and that is in the side which Egypt, its leadership and people, chose, in solidarity with all our brethren in the States of moderation.”

He also stated that "Discussions focused on the situation in the region and Lebanon, and all the problems in the region. We also talked in detail about the interest of Lebanon and the Arabs. We see, just as Egypt does, that moderation means facing all kinds of extremism and not only one kind. Extremism exists, whether the Iranian extremism or the extremism of “Daesh” and “”Nusra”. We also talked about Lebanon’s confrontation of extremism, and President al-Sisi hoped that Lebanon would elect a president and this is the hope of all countries."

They also discussed the initiaves led by Iran in the region, and stressed that there are dangers surrounding the Arab world today. "An Arab strategy should be fixed to face all these risks, Hariri said. I can honestly say that we have remarks concerning Iran but this does not mean that we are against Iran. We want our relation with Iran to benefit both Lebanon and Iran and not solely Iran."

Hariri and Sissi also talked about the Syrian crisis. "Egypt and all countries support the “Geneva I” and “Geneva II” decisions, and I do not see that Egypt has a different position. The problem is that the Syrian regime says something and does something else. There is a global consensus that this regime cannot continue the way it is now. The Geneva I & II solutions require the regime of Bashar Assad to leave power. Thus, if the Syrian regime accepts “Geneva I” then it should step aside and there would be a power transfer as stipulated by the “Geneva I” conference," Hariri concluded.
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