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Excerpts from the Arab and Iranian Media & Analysis of US Policy in the Region

[TRANSLATED] Key Announcement: Egypt supports Russian military escalation in Syria

Translated in today’s Daily Briefing (for a free trial of our services, email

On October 5, the Qatari-owned Al-Quds al-Arabi daily carried the following report by its correspondent in Cairo Manar Abdul Fattah: “The announcement made by Egypt yesterday regarding its support of Russia’s raids in Syria provoked wide controversy surrounding its new political priorities, especially since it represents “a new test for its relations with the US and Saudi Arabia,” as per some experts. Others however expressed their opposition to Cairo’s official position, thus voicing concerns over the fall of civilian victims. Yesterday, Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri stated to the Saudi Al-Arabiya channel: “The information we have acquired through our direct contacts with the Russian side point to its interest in fighting terror and containing the spread of terrorism in Syria… And we believe that Russia’s contribution to that effort with all its capabilities will contain and eliminate terrorism in Syria…”

“But the Egyptian position contradicted that of several states in the US-led coalition, which described this development as an “additional escalation that will only fuel extremism…” And until Sunday afternoon, no Saudi or US response had been issued in regard to the Egyptian stance. For his part, former Assistant Foreign Minister Ambassador Massoum Marzouk said to Al-Quds al-Arabi: “I personally do not encourage these Russian raids and do not think it is a good thing for Arab territories to be opened to all the sides from the east and west. I am not reassured about what is happening, as it is causing the fall of victims on Arab soil, whether in Syria, Iraq, Libya or Yemen, at a time when the Arab skies are filled with American, French and Russian planes among others and the Arab League is standing by, along with its members, like a broken down building, unable to adopt whichever decision.”

“He continued: “This support is unfathomable. On what basis does Egypt support what is happening, although we all know that in war strategies, air bombings do not differentiate between the victims on the ground, which will undoubtedly cause the fall of many innocent people?… Saudi Arabia’s anger towards Egypt’s position is like a “dark comedy” seen in the Arab world, because this anger is unjustified. Indeed, if we dig deeper, we would see that Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries, in close cooperation with the CIA and Turkish intelligence, are the ones that stood behind and funded the factions fighting on Syrian soil.” As for former Undersecretary of the Foreign Minister Ambassador Ibrahim Yusri, he said to Al-Quds al-Arabi: “No one knows in which direction Egypt’s policy is heading, but what is certain is that it is witnessing a complete shift…”

“Observers said at this level that the Egyptian position did not come as a surprise, especially in light of Egyptian President Abdul Fattah es-Sisi’s statements to the American CNN during his participation in the UN General Assembly meetings last week, regarding the fact that “the priority at this stage is to fight terrorism,” stressing: “The collapse of the state in Syria would mean the fall of all the regime’s weapons in terrorist hands.” Still, it conveys an unprecedented strategic transformation towards further autonomy from Cairo’s traditional allies throughout more than four decades.”


Written by nickbiddlenoe

October 5, 2015 at 8:14 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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