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Egyptian President, Iranian Politician Discuss Middle East Issues

  • Aya Batrawy

Egypt's president has met with the speaker of Iran's parliament to discuss bilateral relations and developments in the region. This was the first high level meeting and a sign of improved relations between the two countries, which severed full diplomatic ties in 1979. Reporter Aya Batrawy has more from our Middle East bureau in Cairo.

Following his meeting in Cairo with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, the head of Iran's Shura Council, Gholam-Ali Haddad-Adel , told reporters the two discussed the Palestinian situation in Gaza, the war in Iraq, and developments in Lebanon.

He said he and Mr. Mubarak discussed their desire to strengthen ties between the two countries so as to fuel peace in the Middle East, the wider Islamic region and internationally.

Regarding Iran's security, Ali said President Mubarak told him he has repeatedly advised American diplomats against the U.S. using military force against Iran.

Iranian diplomats have been meeting with their Egyptian counterparts in Cairo this week primarily to discuss ways to help relief efforts in Gaza, now ruled by the Islamic militant group Hamas. Iran is a strong backer of Hamas.

Last week, the Egyptian president and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahamedinijad held their first direct talks in a telephone call.

Egypt and Iran severed diplomatic ties nearly 30 years ago after Cairo allowed the deposed Shah of Iran into the country. The Shah is buried in the Egyptian capital.

In May, Mr. Ahmadinejad said Tehran is ready to restore full ties with Egypt. Egypt has said it is considering the offer.