Egypt’s Sisi in Germany seeking Western support

Egypt's president is in Berlin to meet with the German chancellor and other leaders amid concerns about the ex-general’s government’s human rights record

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Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi is in Berlin for meetings with Chancellor Angela Merkel and other German leaders amid widespread concerns about the ex-general’s government’s human rights record.

Last month, Parliamentary Speaker Norbert Lammert cancelled his planned meeting with Sisi, citing the Egyptian government’s “systematic persecution of opposition groups” and other concerns.

Merkel’s spokesman Steffen Seibert said ahead of Wednesday’s visit that the chancellor would raise the issue of human rights with Sisi. But Seibert emphasized the German government’s position that “because of the various crises and the very precarious situation in the region it is very important to keep the dialogue with a central regional player like Cairo open despite differences of opinions.”

Sisi’s office says he seeks to boost economic, military and security cooperation during his visit to Germany.

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