ECR Delegation to Egypt - security, Christian rights and growth

The ECR Enlarged Bureau travelled to Cairo, Egypt, from 6-9 December 2016.

The ECR Enlarged Bureau travelled to Cairo, Egypt, from 6-9 December 2016. The Delegation, chaired by Notis Marias (ECR Vice-Chair, Greece), consisted of 5 Members and included Vice-President of the European Parliament, MEP Ryszard Czarnecki (Poland), Bernd Lucke (Germany), Jan Zahradil (Czech Republic) and Peter van Dalen (Netherlands).

The visit started with an exchange of views with the Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, lasting almost two hours, in which the economy, regional cooperation, terrorism, migration, the freedom of religion and regional conflicts, especially in Syria, were thoroughly discussed. The Delegation also met with the Speaker of the Egyptian House of Representatives, Dr Aly Abdel-Aal, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Mr Ahmed Said, Chair of the Human Rights Committee, Mr Alaa Abed as well as Chair of the Defence and National Security Committee, Mr Kamal Amer.

Other meetings included the Secretary General of the Arab League, Ahmed Abul-Gheit, Grand Imam of Al Azhar, Dr Ahmed Al-Tayeb, Minister of Tourism, Mr Yahia Rashed as well as Chair of the Chairman of the Egyptian European Council, Mr Mohamed Abul-Enein.

Members of the ECR Bureau underlined that security is one of the most important rights of each citizen and touched upon the need to support Egyptian youth, especially in the fields of growth, investments and jobs. In their meetings the ECR Members also asked about the situation of Copts and welcomed governmental plans to rebuild the churches destroyed in recent years by the extremists.

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