Morsi wants central Arab role for Egypt

2012-09-05 16:03

Cairo - Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi told a gathering of Arab foreign ministers on Wednesday that he wanted to revive Egypt's pivotal role in the Arab region after the country had been "marginalised."

Morsi told ministers at the Arab League headquarters that he wanted Egypt to "regain its natural place in the Arab world, contributing to help its people build a bright Arab future".

He said that Egypt had "unfortunately been absent from Arab work for a while."

"We return from this marginalisation, where we have lived in recent decades, back to Egypt's natural historic role," Morsi said.

Since his election in June, Morsi has sought to redefine Egypt's diplomatic path, taking a strong stance on the Syria conflict and visiting Iran and China, both rivals of Egypt's traditional ally the United States.

Morsi lashed out at the Syrian regime during a speech at the summit of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in Tehran last week, calling it "oppressive" while publicly urging support for rebels seeking President Bashar Assad's ouster.

"Egypt's commitment to the Arab region is a historic commitment, renewed by the 25 January revolution" that toppled Hosni Mubarak and paved the way for Morsi to become the first Islamist leader of the Arab world's most populous nation.

"Our ability as Arabs to face the challenges of the current phase is largely based on our ability to develop Arab co-operation," Morsi said.

"We must complete each other and be able to reform the mechanisms of Arab cooperation in order to revive, in all of us, the concept of Arab unity," he said.

"If the Arabs rise, the whole world will rise," Morsi said.

The Egyptian leader is set to embark on his first official trip to Europe next week, visiting Brussels and Rome before attending the UN General Assembly later this month.

  • AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-09-05 17:23

    The Arab Spring is alive and well!! President Morsi is blowing the winds of freedom to the Arab countries. He might become one of the most amzing and powerful leaders Africa has ever had !!

      tabib.asnan.3 - 2012-09-05 21:13

      How true and how wonderful for Africa, friend.

  • fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-05 17:24

    So good to see the new democratic Egypt taking a stand like this. The will of the people will prevail.

  • J.Stephen.Whiteley - 2012-09-05 17:38

    So Egypt is an Asian country, not an African country as the OAU like to think.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-05 18:00

      Egypt is in Africa but culturally part African, part Middle Eastern. It is not Asian in any way.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-05 18:03

      Patrick is blindly obsessed. There is nothing that can ever happen that will satisfy him that the will of the majority of a country's people is reflected in its leaders. Not even a massive uprising that changed 5,000 years of history and installed a democratically elected Egyptian leader. He just doesn't want to understand.

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-05 18:19

      To Patrick, the millions of Egyptians who removed their unelected dictator were motivated by money and Western economic dominance. Can anyone make sense of this?

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-09-05 20:09

      Patrick, All in a matter of a few hours; You totally agree with Morsi..............!! and than your next comment; You redicule Morsi with Hillary Clinton.....!!!!! It seems President Morsi confuses you even more than you are !!!!!

      tabib.asnan.3 - 2012-09-05 21:14

      Gentlemen, lets hope for the best for our distant neighbours.

  • Madhi - 2012-09-05 19:54

    Now let's see him cancel the unbalanced gas deal with Israel and recognise Hamas as the legitimate choice of the Palestinian people. I guess that will need more balls than remind us of Gamal Nasser we all loved.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-09-06 01:06

      Patrick, You conveniently forgot that Egypt is now a democracy. I am sure that President Morsi and his party, would like to be in power for more than a few years!! But THAT will depend on the Egyptian people !! With your silly and childish anti Western views, you do not understand the difference between Morsi and Mubarak !!!!!!!!!!!

      fred.fraser.12 - 2012-09-07 15:28

      Such a silly, foolish comment.

  • tabib.asnan.3 - 2012-09-05 21:12

    I am so happy for my Egyptian brothers. I hear that they are now calling foreigners off the street and inviting them for tea and sweet meats. May peace be on them.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-09-06 14:31

      Peace has certainly returned to Egypt, after years of living with tyranny and in fear!! Nations, at times are blessed to have the right person coming forward to lead their country. SA was blessed, recently Malawi got Joyce Banda, now Egypt has got their man, to transform Egypt from a dictatorship into a fully fledged democracy! And so great that President Morsi, wants Egypt again to play an important role in the region. And although , up to now, I have agreed with everything Pres Morsi has said or done, it is very likely that there will be times I won't agree with him. But, so what, I am very sure Pres Morsi will do what is best in the interest of the Egyptian people and the region. I wish him and the Egyptian people, all the very best !

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