Egypt may restart its mission in IraqApril 20th, 2008 - 4:11 pm ICT by admin
Cairo, April 20 (Xinhua) Egypt is contemplating restarting its diplomatic mission in Iraq some three years after it pulled back the staff from Baghdad on security considerations, a senior official has said. Mohammed Badreddin, Egypt’s assistant foreign minister for Arab affairs, told reporters Saturday that Cairo was considering such a move as Baghdad is exerting pressure on Arab countries to upgrade their diplomatic representation in Iraq.
After a blast at the Jordanian embassy in Iraq in August 2003 that killed at least 17 people, many Arab diplomats chose to stay away from Baghdad.
In July 2005, Egypt pulled diplomats out of Iraq after its top envoy Ihab al-Sherif was kidnapped and then killed in the Iraqi capital.
Badreddin stressed the need to speed up efforts to restore Iraq’s stability and unity.
Earlier, Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit promised to send a team to Iraq to assess the security situation there, as a first step towards sending back its ambassador to Baghdad.
Abul Gheit made the promise in Washington Friday after his talks with the US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the Egyptian Gazette newspaper reported.
He, however, stressed that Egypt can resume diplomatic representation with Iraq only after all security guarantees are available for the safety of the Egyptian personnel.