Egypt cuts military ties with North Korea

Author : Mircea Birca | Wednesday, September 13, 2017
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Egypt’s defense minister, on a visit to Seoul, announced that his country has cut military ties with North Korea, according to a report by South Korea’s Yonhap news agency.

There was no immediate confirmation from the Egyptian government of the agency’s report, but the move follows last month’s decision by the United States to cut or delay nearly $300m in aid over Egypt’s human rights record and ties with Pyongyang.

Yonhap’s late on Monday report quoted the South Korean Defense Ministry as saying Egypt’s visiting military chief has told his counterpart, Song Young-moo, that Cairo has “already severed all military ties with North Korea.”

“Egypt will actively cooperate with South Korea against North Korea acts that threaten peace,” the agency quoted the Egyptian minister, Sidki Sobhi, as saying.

Yonhap said Sobhi’s comment was in response to Song’s request for Egypt to join efforts to toughen sanctions on the North for its recent ballistic missile and nuclear tests.

In Cairo, Egypt’s military spokesperso Colonel Tamer el-Rifai would only say that Sobhi discussed military and security cooperation with South Korean officials. He declined to elaborate.

Egypt has for decades maintained close ties with North Korea, with the secretive nation selling weapons to Egypt and upgrading its arsenal of medium-range, ground-to-ground missiles.

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