On Monday, 7 November, President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi held a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron to discuss issues related to food and energy security, as well as to leverage the experience of France in certain sectors such as transportation, particularly in the electric car industry.
The two leaders also discussed regional and international issues of common interest, namely the Libyan crisis and the Russia-Ukraine crisis.
For his part, President Emmanuel Macron said that he discussed the case of Egyptian-British hunger striker Alaa Abd el-Fattah. He also added that President Al-Sisi was “committed” to protecting Alaa Abdel-Fattah’s health, with hopes that “the next few weeks and months will bring results”.
He also lauded Egypt’s efforts in successfully organizing the COP27 summit, and added that France is keen on enhancing its cooperation with Egypt, as it plays a key role in ensuring stability in the Middle East, Mediterranean region and Africa.
On the same day, Al-Sisi held a meeting with UK prime minister Rishi Sunak, which was the first foreign visit since he assumed his new role on October 25. The two sides exchanged economic and trade relations, according to the presidential spokesperson, and agreed to promote further dialogue in the coming period.
According to Sunak’s office, the British Prime Minister expressed “deep concern” over the case of Egyptian-British hunger striker Alaa Abd el-Fattah, stating that he hopes to see this resolved as soon as possible and that he would “continue to press for progress.”
The president also met with Italy’s Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni to discuss energy security, as it is a key area of cooperation between the two sides, particularly through partnership with the Eni company in natural gas.
They also touched on the possibilities of implementing an electricity interconnection project with Italy, which will contribute to addressing the energy crisis in Europe.
More than 100 heads of state have confirmed their attendance at COP27, with expected attendance from US President Joe Biden on Friday. However, major global powers such as China, India and Russia are all absent from the event, as well as Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.