by WorldTribune Staff, March 20, 2017
Egyptian President Abdul Fatah Sisi will make his first state visit to Washington on April 3.
A White House official confirmed on March 19 that President Donald Trump will host the Egyptian leader, Reuters reported.
Former President Barack Obama had never extended a formal invitation to Sisi, who was elected president in 2014.
After Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in the November election, Sisi praised the new president-elect and said he expected greater engagement in the Middle East from his administration.
The two leaders, in a Jan. 23 phone call just days after Trump’s inauguration, discussed ways to boost the fight against terrorism.
Obama and Sisi had strained relations after Sisi ousted then-Islamist President Mohammed Morsi in 2013. Obama, who had supported the Muslim Brotherhood-aligned Morsi, suspended American military aid to Egypt. He released the aid two years later.
American law forbids sending aid to countries where a democratic government was deposed by a military coup, though Washington has never qualified Morsi’s ouster as a “coup” and had been cautious about doing so, choosing only to condemn the violence in the country.