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SOURCE: ANI

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi has been invited by India as the chief guest at the Republic Day celebrations in January and to celebrate the ‘momentous occasion’ of completing 75 years of diplomatic relations between the two nations has further strengthened by mutual warmth, friendship, and goodwill, Ausaf Sayeed, secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs said on Monday.

Calling the completion of 75 years of diplomatic ties between India and Egypt a ‘momentous occasion’, Sayeed said the two nations established formal relations three days after India attained independence on August 15 in 1947.

He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi invited Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi as chief guest for the Republic Day and the invitation was warmly received.

“This is indeed a momentous occasion in our bilateral relations with Egypt when our two countries are celebrating 75 years of diplomatic relations. I was told that When we became independent on the 15th of August, 1947 it was three days later on the 18th of August that the relations, formal relations were established which goes on to say the importance which we attach to our relationship with Egypt,”Ausaf Sayeed, secretary (Consular, Passport & Visa and Overseas Indian Affairs) MEA said on Monday.

He further stated, “Our Prime Minister Narendra Modi has invited President Sisi as chief guest for our Republic Day and President Sisi has warmly accepted the invitation. We have invited Egypt as the guest country during our G20 Presidency this year. It is a matter of satisfaction and the civilization that links between India and Egypt have not only stood the test of time but have also further strengthened by mutual warmth, friendship, and goodwill.”

Sayeed added that the ties between the two nations received further momentum with Abdel Fattah El-Sisi’s visits to India and meetings between the two leaders at various forums, including the United Nations.

Participating in a panel discussion on India-Egypt ties in changing global order, Vijay Thakur Singh, Director General of the Indian Council of World Affairs (ICWA) also said that the Egyptian President has been invited as Chief Guest for the Republic Day.

“This panel discussion is taking place on the occasion of the visit of his excellency Egypt’s President, who will be coming to India as Chief Guest for Republic Day celebrations on January 26…President El-Sisi will be the chief guest on Republic Day when India and Egypt celebrate the 75th year of the establishment of diplomatic relations,” she said.

Talking about the visit, she also said that the forthcoming visit by Egypt’s President will be the third since he became the president. President El-Sisi made his first visit in October 2015.

“The current visit by President El-Sisi is very crucial not only from the bilateral perspective but also because the visit is taking place at a time when world politics is in flux. The Covid pandemic has caused unprecedented disarray and the Russian-Ukraine conflict has great consequences for global food energy, and fertilizer securities, especially for developing countries as President of G20 for the next year 2022-2023, India has invited Egypt as a guest country to G20 meetings,” Thakur said.

Earlier, in December, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar informed the Parliament that the Egyptian President has accepted the invitation to be the chief guest at the Republic Day celebrations in India.

“As far as Republic Day celebrations are concerned, we have invited Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi as the chief guest and he has graciously accepted the invitation,” said Jaishankar in Parliament while delivering his remarks on the ‘Latest Developments in India’s Foreign Policy’.

It is pertinent to mention that this is the first time that an Egyptian President will be the chief guest on India’s Republic Day.

“At the invitation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Abdel Fattah Al Sisi, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, will be the Chief Guest at India’s Republic Day celebrations on January 26, 2023. This is the first time that the President of the Arab Republic of Egypt will be the Chief Guest at our Republic Day,” the External Affairs Ministry said in the press release.

The MEA noted that India and Egypt have “warm and friendly relations” based on civilizational and deep-rooted people-to-people ties.