UPDATED 7:31 AM PT — Monday, April 1, 2019
Egypt’s president is making his way to the U.S., where he’s expected to receive a warm welcome in Washington, D.C. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi will meet with President Trump at the White House. The leaders are slated to discuss several high profile issues. This includes joint military efforts and economic ties between the two countries.
It’s speculated the pair could also discuss counterterrorism efforts as well as the Trump administration’s upcoming Middle East peace plan, which is not expected to be released until after Israel’s presidential race. The meeting comes on the eve of Israel’s elections, which means discussing the details of the plan could be a high possibility.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sat down with al-Sisi in Cairo at the beginning of the New Year. During that meeting, Pompeo stressed that al-Sisi needed to do more to address human rights abuses in the country. However, in late February the Egyptian president defended the use of the death penalty at a European Union Arab summit.
“Our priority is preserving our countries and stopping them from collapse, destruction and ruin as you see in many surrounding states,” stated al-Sisi. “The matter is different, so I ask for understanding between us and knowledge that the existing priorities and goals, although different, can have similar interests that allow for cooperation.”
His remarks come as reports are shedding light on the rising number of executions among detainees in the country. Over 2,500 death sentences have been handed down since 2014. It’s unclear if this issue will be on the table, but the U.S. and United Nations have made their stance clear.