Egypt's Sisi in Berlin to court German investors
Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi was set to meet his German counterpart, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, in an effort by the North African leader to expand political relations and attract German investment.
Sisi is also set to meet with Wolfgang Schaeuble, the president of Germany's Bundestag lower house of parliament. Sisi is in Germany to attend the "Compact with Africa" conference, which was launched under Germany's Group of 20 presidency. Its purpose is to facilitate German support for reform-oriented states in Africa. Germany's Foreign Ministry called for an improvement in the human rights situation in Egypt. A spokesman also raised freedom of expression in the country as well as the opportunities for civil society and non-governmental organisations to do their work.
"We are of the overall opinion that stability and successful action against terrorism must also be linked to the social, economic and political participation of the entire population," the spokesman said. "And it is against this background that we are shaping our relations with Egypt."
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas had already called on Egypt to respect human rights during a visit in October. That was in response to the Egyptian government's reaction to protests in September. The demonstrators called for Sisi to be overthrown. (dpa)