AJC Delegation Visits Cairo, Amman

Jul 07, 2015, 15:43 ET from American Jewish Committee

CAIRO, July 7, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In high-level meetings days after deadly attacks in Sinai and Heliopolis, AJC expressed its solidarity with Egypt in the fight against Islamist terror.

In the organization's fifth visit to Cairo since the January 2011 revolution, a delegation led by AJC President Stanley Bergman offered its condolences to President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi for the losses the country has suffered at the hands of Islamist terrorists, and discussed a range of strategic, political, economic and social issues.

"Egypt, a vital ally of the United States, faces stiff challenges – but we come away from our latest visit to Cairo impressed by President Sisi's resolve to confront them," said Bergman, after the group's two-hour meeting in the presidential palace. "The battles Egypt is waging against the jihadist threat, and the course it is pursuing to recover from years of stagnation and political upheaval, are critical to the region and to the world."

"We look forward to the government's progress in satisfying the Egyptian people's demand for security and stability, achieving its economic growth targets, and fulfilling the promise of democratic institution-building and human rights protection."

The delegation met with senior officials – including Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab and Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry – as well as with diplomats, business leaders, political activists and civil society figures. Joining Bergman in the delegation were John Shapiro, chairman of the AJC Board of Trustees; Allan Reich, chairman of the AJC International Relations Commission; Dr. Marion Bergman, chairwoman of the AJC Africa Institute; Dr. Shonni Silverberg; Jason Isaacson, AJC Associate Executive Director for Policy; and Lauren Kimmel, Assistant Director for Diplomatic Outreach.

Topics addressed in the course of AJC's two days of meetings in Cairo included the regional implications of a prospective P5+1 nuclear deal with Iran; increased instability across the Middle East and North Africa, and its impact on Egypt and Israel; enhancement of the U.S.-Egyptian relationship – including expanded economic ties; increased strategic cooperation between Egypt and Israel against Islamist terror; the prospect of expanded economic and people-to-people interaction between Egypt and Israel; Egypt's agenda regarding Israel in international forums; the preservation of Egyptian Jewish heritage; and concerns about global and regional anti-Semitism.

AJC and Egyptian leaders also discussed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict – each side expressing its long-standing support for a negotiated two-state solution.

The delegation's meetings in Cairo followed consultations in Amman with a range of officials, including Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh and Chief of the Royal Hashemite Court Dr. Fayez Tarawneh, as well as with diplomats and civil society figures.

AJC expressed its solidarity with Jordan, as the Kingdom deals with the massive influx of refugees from conflict in Syria and Iraq – while joining the United States and other allies in the confrontation against Islamist terror.


SOURCE American Jewish Committee