Norwegian Foreign Minister visits Egypt

“Egypt is in a critical phase after a historic revolution, in which the younger generation has played a decisive role,” says Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre. “Now the people’s demands for democracy and human rights must be met. We intend to further develop our contact with popular movements and progressive potential leaders on the Egyptian political stage.”

Støre arrived in Egypt Feb. 28 and will stay through March 2. His plans include meetings with representatives from the authorities, opposition parties, political youth groups and key analysts. Among the representatives are the Secretary-General of the Arabic League, Amr Moussa, Egyptian Foreign Minister Aboul Gheit and Nobel Peace Laureate and former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency Mohammed El Baradei. The talks will focus on the political and democratic developments in Egypt, the situation in the region with particular focus on Libya, the peace process in Sudan, and the peace process between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

“The revolution we have witnessed in Egypt was started and driven by the Egyptians themselves. The President has stepped down, and now the people’s hopes and demands for reform need to be met – step by step. The constitution must be changed, elections held, and economic growth created. I want to listen to the Egyptians’ own views and experiences, and find out how Norway can assist and support the country on its path towards democracy and economic development,” Støre says.

Støre will conclude his tour with a one-day visit to Jerusalem and Ramallah for talks with Israeli and Palestinian leaders on March 2.

Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs

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