Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Sunday received the speaker of the Canadian Senate, George Furey.
According to Presidency Spokesperson Bassam Rady, Furey expressed his keenness in visiting Egypt and meeting with President Sisi out of faith in Egypt’s central role in the Middle East region and appreciation towards Sisi’s combating of extremist thought and terrorism, as well as his reformist approach in Egypt at the economic and social levels.
Furey further praised the security and stability in Egypt, Rady added, which has strengthened Cairo’s role in its regional environment and supported security and stability for the entire region as well as the African continent.
Rady said that the meeting saw a review of bilateral relations between the two countries.
Sisi expressed appreciation for Canada’s support and treatment of the Egyptian community there, thus enabling them to successfully integrate in many social, economic and political fields. He stressed the importance of the Egyptian community in Canada in supporting and strengthening relations between the two countries at various levels.
The president also affirmed Egypt’s keenness to uphold the principle of citizenship and consolidate the culture of pluralism and acceptance of others. He pointed out that Egypt is a model for peaceful coexistence in the region, which contributes to the efforts of bringing together different peoples and cultures, said Rady.
Sisi and Furey reviewed Egypt’s efforts in combating terrorism, countering extremist ideology, reforming religious discourse and the role played by state agencies in this regard.
The president stressed the importance the state attaches to the development of the education system in all its stages and the importance of cooperation between the two countries in the field of basic and university education, through the presence of Canadian universities in Egypt.
Sisi also reviewed Egypt’s efforts towards comprehensive economic and social reform, expressing hope that Canada could take part through economic and investment opportunities currently made available in Egypt.
The meeting also highlighted the importance Egypt attaches to the empowerment of women and young people. Sisi referred to the high priority accorded to women’s rights, especially in light of their pivotal role in in economic reform and countering extremist ideology.
He pointed out that recent constitutional amendments set 25 percent as a minimum percentage of parliament seats for women, as part of state efforts to empower women.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm