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Shukri working with Cameron and British officials to fight terrorism

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry met with British Prime Minister David Cameron and other British officials during which both parties discussed regional issues, especially developments on the Syrian and Iraqi fronts, as well as efforts to fight terrorism.

Cameron began the meeting by offering his condolences to Egypt and the Egyptian people for the loss of their troops in an attack on the Sinai last Friday, described as a terrorist attack by the Egyptian government.

Following the loss of 31 Egyptian soldiers in the attack, Egyptian President Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi declared three days of mourning and declared a state of emergency for three months.

Shoukry, who arrived in London yesterday for a two-day visit to the UK, emphasised Egypt's need for support from the international community in their efforts to fight terrorism.

According to a statement released after the meeting, bilateral talks will continue to take place between Britain and Egypt as Shoukry insisted that Egypt was in need of British support, especially in light of a pending economic forum. The forum, scheduled to take place this February, will discuss foreign investments in Egypt and what needs to be done in order to ensure that the country develops in a positive manner.

During the meeting, Egyptian and British support for the American-led international coalition against ISIS dubbed "Operation Inherent Resolve" was discussed. The international effort was launched to counter the militant group's advances.

After officials from both countries met, British Foreign Secretary Phillip Hammond said: "Both the United Kingdom and Egypt share common interests in the region and both countries seek to prevent terrorism and ensure a sense of security and stability prevails in the region."

"We stand by the Egyptian people in their fight against terrorism, especially in light of what has occurred in Sinai. Mr. Shoukry also discussed his interest in protecting constitutional rights in Egypt, especially freedom of the press. He ensured us that the government is working on the release of Egyptian journalists, two of whom are British citizens," Hammond continued.

Last Sunday, Egyptian authorities sentenced and jailed 23 members of the opposition to three years in prison and fined each of them 10,000 Egyptian pounds for protesting without a permit. Egyptian authorities claim that protesting without a permit incites violence and terrorism.

During his visit, the Egyptian official met with many members of the British Labour party, including Douglas Alexander and Gareth Thomas. All of the officials in question emphasised the shared regional interests between the two countries.

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