CAIRO, Aug 25, 2012 (AFP) -
CAIRO, Aug 25, 2012 (AFP) –
Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi has no immediate plans to restore ties with Iran, his spokesman said in comments published Saturday ahead of a landmark visit to Tehran later this month for a Non-Aligned Movement summit.
“The matter (of restoring diplomatic ties) is out of the question at this stage,” Yasser Ali told the Saudi-owned newspaper Al-Sharq Al-Awsat in an interview also carried by Egyptian media.
Morsi will spend only four hours in Tehran on August 30, long enough to hand over the presidency of the Non-Aligned Movement to the Islamic republic, Egypt’s state-owned Al-Ahram newspaper reported.
The Egyptian president will stop in Tehran on his way back from a 36-hour visit to China, the country he chose for his first major international outing, Al-Ahram added.
Tehran severed diplomatic ties with Cairo in 1980 after the Islamic revolution in Iran, to protest Egypt’s 1979 peace treaty with Israel and its hosting of the deposed shah.
Ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak regarded Iran as a destabilising factor in the Middle East.
On August 17, Tehran backed Morsi’s proposal at an Organisation of Islamic Cooperation summit in Mecca to form a committee grouping Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Turkey to find a settlement to the conflict in Syria.