Last week General Sir Nicholas Houghton, Chief of Defence Staff for the UK Armed Forces, hosted his Egyptian counterpart Lieutenant General Mahmoud Hegazy on a four-day visit to the UK.
Building on a strong, existing relationship between the UK and Egypt, General Houghton held frank and open discussions with General Hegazy. General Houghton emphasised the UK’s commitment to work with Egypt to tackle the shared challenges facing both countries. He focused especially on how the UK can support Egypt in effective counter-terrorism and how the two countries can work together to ensure a secure and stable future for Libya.
General Hegazy also met Defence Secretary Michael Fallon who recently represented the UK at the opening of the new Suez Canal. Mr Fallon told Gen Hegazy that the UK remains committed to supporting a more secure, prosperous, and democratic Egypt.
The visit also provided an opportunity for General Hegazy to visit Longmoor military training camp, where 15 Egyptian officers are currently receiving close protection training from British army experts.
Ambassador John Casson said:
General Hegazy’s visit opens new horizons in the developing partnership between Britain and Egypt. Our countries face the same threat from ISIL terrorism and the extremism that feeds it, and the UK will not leave Egypt to stand alone against it, in Sinai, Libya or elsewhere. We are putting this into action with the training and investment that General Hegazy is seeing in the UK this week. But our partnership is not limited to security measures: we must also expand our work to confront the long-term political, economic and ideological challenges that lie behind the crisis in the region.”