In President Sisi visit, India and Egypt look to rekindle non-aligned era ties  read full article at

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi arrives at Air Force Station Palam in New Delhi on January 24, 2023.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi arrives at Air Power Station Palam in New Delhi on January 24, 2023.
| Picture Credit score: PTI

Egyptian President Abdel Fateh el-Sisi arrived right here on Tuesday on a four-day state go to. Mr. Sisi is the primary Egyptian chief to be invited because the chief visitor for the Republic Day Parade.

In the course of the go to, officers mentioned, each side will signal a number of MoUs and focus on taking ties ahead on strategic points, defence, commerce, agriculture and renewable power.

The invitation to Mr. Sisi can also be being seen as a part of the federal government’s push to interact the “Global South”, and as a rekindling of the ideas of non-alignment which have come again to the fore after the Russian warfare in Ukraine started in February final yr. Mr. Sisi, who visited India twice earlier than, is anticipated to return later this yr for the G-20 summit, the place India has invited Egypt as a particular visitor nation.

“Even without coordination, Egypt and India have similar positions at the United Nations today. We have civilisational ties, and the way our thinking has developed — principles of non-intervention, respectful of sovereignty, no use of force — these are all pertinent even today, as we have seen recently in the Ukraine conflict,” a senior Egyptian diplomat who served in India as Ambassador beforehand informed The Hindu.

Former Indian Ambassador to Egypt Navdeep Suri mentioned the invitation to Mr. Sisi as Republic Day chief visitor was an “important gesture” by the Modi authorities at a time the world was “re-discovering multipolarity”. He identified that within the wake of Western sanctions in opposition to Russia for the warfare in Ukraine, and a ban on wheat exports in India, the Modi authorities had made an exception for Egypt.

“As the world’s largest importer of wheat much of it from Ukraine and Russia, Egypt was in a uniquely vulnerable position, and India’s assistance bridged what could have become a major gap in supply for them,” he mentioned. “The fact is in a world where the need for strategic autonomy is replacing many traditional alliances in the developing world, India and Egypt are finding more and more in common,” he added.

India and Egypt had been co-founders of the Non-Alignment Motion (NAM) in 1961 together with Yugoslavia, Indonesia and Ghana. Ties between India and Egypt grew below Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and President Gamal Abdel Nasser, particularly after India’s help to Egypt in the course of the Suez Disaster of 1956. Nevertheless, regardless of maintaining the high-level visits and conserving their dedication to NAM sturdy, bilateral ties between the 2 international locations declined over time, particularly as India’s hyperlinks with the Gulf international locations, the place the Indian diaspora was primarily based and most of its oil procured, grew stronger. President Hosni Mubarak visited India in 2008, adopted by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s go to to Egypt for the NAM summit in 2009 and President Mohammed Morsi’s go to in 2013.

After assuming workplace in 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited President Sisi for the India-Africa summit in 2015 and a state go to in 2016. However he skipped attending the NAM summits in Venezuela and Azerbaijan in 2016 and 2019, the primary Indian PM in workplace to take action, indicating a potential shift from the grouping. (In 2020, Mr. Modi did attend a digital assembly of the NAM contact group summit hosted by Azerbaijan in regards to the COVID-19 pandemic).

“I can tell you that the main principles, the founding principles of the non-aligned movement did not disappear. There might have been some global changes that pushed the NAM itself into the background, but it doesn’t change our positions,” the senior Egyptian diplomat engaged in preparations for the Sisi go to to India, who didn’t need to be recognized, mentioned, stating that the “South-South cooperation” and the G-77 that India and Egypt are actively concerned in, had been merchandise of the NAM motion.

“With a population of almost 110 million, a location that straddles Africa and Asia, a standing Army that is the largest in the region, a capital that hosts the League of Arab States and a diplomatic presence that punches above its weight in global affairs, Egypt is a pivotal player,” Mr. Suri wrote in an ORF journal article this month, including that Mr. Modi’s go to to Egypt was now “overdue” given {that a} deliberate journey in 2020 needed to be delay as a result of pandemic and Mr. Modi didn’t attend the CoP27 Local weather Change convention in Sharm el-Sheikh in November 2022.

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