Egypt Armed Forces chief of staff heads to UK

The Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces, Mahmoud Hegazy, headed to London on Tuesday on an official visit to hold important talks with senior officials of the British armed forces, Colonel Tamer al-Refaei, the Egyptian Armed Forces spokesperson, said via his official Facebook page.

The visit aims to strengthen Egypt-UK cooperation and military relations, as well as coordinate efforts regarding security threats to the stability of the Middle East, Refaei added.

The UK Defense Minister Sir Michael Fallon visited Cairo in September 2016, when he met with Egypt's Defense Minister Sedky Sobhy to discuss military cooperation between the two countries, as well as security developments in the Middle East and North Africa.

In May 2016, Lieutenant General Tom Beckett, Defense Senior Advisor for the Middle East at the UK Ministry of Defense, visited Egypt and met with senior Egyptian army officials.

Beckett described Egypt as an important partner to the UK in the fight against "Islamic State" (IS) militant group in the Middle East.

Al-Ahram state-run website reported earlier in May that Britain exports millions of pounds of arms to Egypt annually, with a dramatic increase in export licences for weapons recorded in 2015.

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