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First Turkish delegation in 8 years arrives in Cairo

Egypt's Deputy Foreign Minister Hamdi Sanad Loza (R) meets with his Turkish counterpart Sedat Onal (L) in the foreign ministry headquarters in the Egyptian capital Cairo on 5 May 2021. [KHALED DESOUKI/AFP via Getty Images]
Egypt's Deputy Foreign Minister Hamdi Sanad Loza (R) meets with his Turkish counterpart Sedat Onal (L) in the foreign ministry headquarters in the Egyptian capital Cairo on 5 May 2021. [KHALED DESOUKI/AFP via Getty Images]

An official Turkish delegation has arrived in Egypt on the first official visit in eight years as part of efforts by the two countries to restore diplomatic relations.

The visit is the start of two days of political consultations in the Egyptian capital to mend strained relations and restore normalised ties.

The two countries also aim to improve economic relations.

Ties between Cairo and Ankara have been strained since the 2013 coup against Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, which Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan rejected.

Many of Morsi's supporters and other Egyptians escaping persecution fled to Turkey and sought refuge in the country.

Leaders of the two countries have also clashed over maritime claims and their opposing positions on Libya. Now Erdogan has said he hopes to strike a deal with Egypt over maritime boundaries in the Mediterranean.

READ: Turkey to improve ties with Egypt, minister says

Since the beginning of the rapprochement, Turkey has made steps to close TV stations in Istanbul which regularly host members of the Egyptian opposition, following a request from the Egyptian administration.

Several members of the Egyptian opposition in Turkey are concerned that they will lose their right to speak freely about the regime of coup leader turned President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi and that those without Turkish citizenship may be asked to leave the country.

In April Egyptian TV host Moataz Matar announced that his programme on Al-Sharq channel, which broadcasts from Turkey, had been suspended as had Muhammad Nasser's, an anchor for Mekameleen.

Egyptian intelligence agencies have also directed the state-run press to stop insulting the Turkish president.

The UAE and Saudi Arabia are also trying to warm relations with Turkey. Last month Erdogan called King Salman Bin Abdulaziz to offer his greetings for the month of Ramadan.

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AfricaEgyptEurope & RussiaNewsTurkey
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