News / Middle East

Egypt's Sissi Wins 97 Percent; Iran Invited to His Inauguration

FILE - In this Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014 file photo, Egypt’s military chief Field Marshal Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.
FILE - In this Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014 file photo, Egypt’s military chief Field Marshal Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.
Reuters
Former Egyptian army chief Abdel Fattah el-Sissi secured a landslide victory in the country's presidential vote last week, the election commission confirmed on Tuesday.

Egypt's election commission says Tuesday that Sissi took nearly 97 percent of the vote in last week's race.

Turnout was about 47 percent of Egypt's 54 million voters, the commission said - less than the 40 million votes, or 80 percent of the electorate, that Sissi had called for.   

Meanwhile, Egypt has invited Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to the inauguration ceremony of newly elected Sissi, a trip that would make him only the second Iranian leader to visit Egypt since the countries severed ties in 1980.

Sissi, the former army chief who last year toppled Egypt's first freely elected leader, the Islamist Mohamed Morsi, is expected to be sworn in as president later this week after official results showed he won a landslide victory in last month's election.

Iran welcomed the 2011 uprising that led to the downfall of autocratic President Hosni Mubarak, and considered it an "Islamic awakening" given that it was followed by Islamist rule.

When the army ousted Morsi from power in July last year, Tehran criticized the move, drawing a hostile response from Cairo.

"He was invited in both capacities as president of Iran and president of the Non-Aligned Movement," Egypt's presidential spokesman Ehab Badawi told Reuters, but said that so far there had been no response.

Iran's semi-official Fars news agency said that Egypt's representative in Tehran met with Rouhani's chief of staff, Mohammad Nahavandian, and handed him the official invitation from interim President Adly Mansour.

Under Morsi, ties between the two countries seemed to improve, with the then Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad becoming the first Iranian leader to visit Egypt in more than three decades. He called for a strategic alliance with Egypt and offered Cairo a loan to ease a deepening economic crisis.

Rouhani, a relative moderate who took power in 2013, has pledged to improve relations with Tehran's regional neighbors.

Iran and Egypt cut formal diplomatic relations in 1980 after Tehran was angered by Egypt's admission of the deposed Shah of Iran and Egypt's recognition of Israel.

One persistent obstacle to improving relations has been Tehran naming a street after the Egyptian Islamist militant who led the 1981 assassination of President Anwar Sadat after he signed a peace treaty with Israel.

You May Like

UN Fears Rights Violations in China-backed Projects

UNHCHR investigates link between financing development and ignoring safeguards for human rights More

Boko Haram Violence Tests Nigerians’ Faith in Buhari

New president has promised to stem insurgency; he’s scheduled to meet with President Obama at White House July 20 More

Social Media Network Wants Privacy in User’s Hands

Encryption's popularity in messaging is exploding; now it's the foundation of a new social network More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugeesi
X
Carolyn Weaver
July 06, 2015 6:47 PM
In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.

VOA Blogs