|Egypt's caretaker Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy receives an exclusive interview with Xinhua News Agency in Cairo, capital of Egypt, Aug. 31, 2013. Egypt will give priority to developing relations with the Arab world and African countries, without excluding the international community, Egypt's caretaker Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy told Xinhua on Saturday. (Xinhua/Amru)|
Egypt will give priority to developing relations with the Arab world and African countries, without excluding the international community, Egypt's caretaker Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy told Xinhua on Saturday.
"Egypt is refocusing on its basic parameters, which are the Arab world and Africa, but also engaging internationally, because we are a country that has always been an internationalist in foreign policy," Fahmy said in an interview with Xinhua.
There will be a big difference in foreign policies between the interim government and the administration of former President Mohamed Morsi, who was removed from office by military on July 3, Fahmy said, describing Morsi's political objective as "ideological ".
Now, the development of foreign relations will be based on national interests rather than "ideological theme," he noted.
When assuming the presidency in June 2012, Morsi was expected to adopt a new vision for the foreign policy, because former president Hosni Mubarak, who was toppled in the 2011, failed to build strong relations with the neighboring countries.
However, while trying to improve Egypt's ties with the African and Arab countries, Morsi publicly cut off diplomatic relations with Syria in June, a move described by analysts as a "mistake."
"I believe that the decision to sever ties with Syria was taken in haste, and it's not something particularly useful," the foreign minister said, noting that the interim government will review the two nations' ties and use good offices to "push everyone toward the Geneva format of negotiation."
Egypt emphasized the priority to the peace process in the Arab world, "which we saw is paramount to the country's interests," he said.
After being appointed as the interim foreign minister in mid- July, Fahmy visited Sudan, South Sudan and the city of Ramallah in the Gaza Strip, a step described as an attempt to warm up bilateral ties and gain support from its neighbors.
As for the Egyptian relations with the international community, Fahmy stressed that he aims to expand relations with the other countries such as China, Russia and Brazil. "It is not at the expense of others, but to make better balanced relations," he stressed.
"As a foreign minister, I'd like to promote Egypt-China people- to-people cooperation, especially in academic (field)," Fahmy said, concluding "In addition, I hope to see much wider economic cooperation in investment, trade and even tourism."