Egypt's Sisi: United States should revive Palestinian-Israeli peace talks

14 February, 2018, 20:08 | Author: Charlene Valdez

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson began a five-nation visit to the Middle East in Egypt, where he called for next month's presidential elections to be transparent and credible.

Ukraine is to join the negotiations of the World Coalition for fighting the Islamic State, scheduled for February 13.

The group "remains a very determined enemy and is not yet defeated", Tillerson said Tuesday in Kuwait City at a conference dedicated to raising money for reconstruction in Iraq.

"We have a strong relationship, it's deep, we talk about a lot of things, including things where we have concerns and how we can have those concerns dressed", the official said.

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Tillerson also will meet with foreign ministers about the next step in foiling Islamic State militants by stopping them at borders and deterring recruits.

Erdogan also took aim at comments from a USA commander who said the United States and its partners in Syria would hit back if attacked.

The campaign also comes ahead of March elections in which President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi faces no serious competitors, after authorities sidelined his opponents using a variety of charges and disqualifications, leaving only a little-known supporter to run against him.

In Egypt, as well as in Kuwait, Lebanon and Jordan — the tour's other Arab stops — Tillerson will nearly certainly hear misgivings about President Donald Trump's recent decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, The move angered Washington's Arab allies and undermined the chances of a timely resumption of long-stalled Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.

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"We will continue to be completely transparent with Turkey about our efforts in Syria to defeat ISIS, and we stand by our North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally in its counterterrorism efforts", he went on to say.

Tillerson announced the official U.S. export credit agency, the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM), would sign with Iraq's finance ministry on Tuesday a $3 billion memorandum of understanding "that will set a stage for future cooperation".

The end of major combat operations against Islamic State does not mean the US and its allies have achieved an enduring defeat of the militant group, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Tuesday.

His trip comes amid regional discontent of the USA administration's decision to recognize the disputed city of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Iran and its proxies in Syria have clashed with Israel.

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US officials had no immediate response to the top Turkish diplomat's allegation. If the Syrian Kurds feel threatened, American officials said, they'll move their forces away from Islamic State fronts, prolonging the fight.


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