Aug 28 2013
A non-Arab state, like Turkey, can’t rule the Arab World, Egypt’s interim foreign minister, Nabil Fahmy, told Russia Today-Arabic in an exclusive interview, calling Ankara’s ambitions to restore the Ottoman Empire groundless due to failed relations with neighbors.
RT (h/t Traduction) Egypt’s interim government has only nine months ahead of it, but during that time Egypt will review its relations with all the countries on the world map, Fahmy said. The minister stressed that all the attempts by the US and the EU to bring the army-backed government and the pro-Morsi Muslim Brotherhood movement to the negotiations table have failed, because the sides weren’t ready to reach an agreement and lacked mutual trust.
“First of all, it refers to the political Islam movements. The Muslim Brotherhood wanted a return to the past, but it’s impossible and unacceptable for the majority of the Egyptian people,” he said. “It’s not a problem between the Muslim Brotherhood and the government or the leadership of Egypt. It’s a problem between the Muslim Brotherhood and the majority of the Egyptian people.”
The FM stressed that all the attempts of “internationalization” of the Egyptian problem won’t be tolerated and that the crisis in the country will be settled “the Egyptian way.”
Fahmy has slammed Egypt’s foreign policy under Morsi, saying it was too ideological and lacked sense of direction, “hopping between the Eastern and pro-Western course.” The minister said that it’s going to change under him. He has ordered a revision of Egypt’s relations with all the states on the world map “without exception,” including the US, which had significant influence on the country’s previous government.
“Our decisions will be based on evaluation of how our relations get in line with our [Egypt’s] interests,” he explained. According to the FM, all former statements now belong in the past and in building its new foreign policy Cairo won’t go back to the status quo before June 30, when the first anti-Morsi protests began across the country.
But Fahmy criticized Turkey and the Islamist government of prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan for their backing of the Muslin Brotherhood rule in Egypt. Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) “is afraid that if the ideas of political Islam will fail in the region, it’ll has [have] a negative impact on its own position within Turkey,” he explained.
The minister also believes that the Turkish plan to recreate the Ottoman Empire of 1299-1923 and take the leading position in the Arab World has no grounds in it. “A non-Arab state can’t head the Arab Islamic world,” Fahmy said, adding that Turkish foreign policy, which was previously highly appreciated, is now “suffering a defeat”.
He called Hamas “a part of the solution of the Palestinian problem,” but stressed that Egypt respects its peace treaty with Israel, expressing hope that the 1979 document would become “a starting point for a comprehensive peace between the Arab countries and Israel.”