Pool report #1/Oval with Egypt president

From: Gillman, Todd [mailto:xxx@email.com]
Sent: Monday, April 3, 2017 12:29 PM
Subject: pool report #1/Oval with Egypt president

President Trump and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi

Pool, along with about a dozen Egyptian media, was in the Oval for about 6 minutes.

Trump noted that he met Sisi during the campaign.. .

“We agree on so many things. I just want to let everybody know in case there wa any doubt that we are very much behind President al-Sisi. He’s done a fantastic job in a very difficult situation. We are very much behind Egypt and the people of Egypt. The United States has believe me, backing, and we have strong backing.”

He talked about building up the US military. “We are rejuvenating our military to the highest level… That’s what we need.”

“You have a great friend and ally in the United States and in me,” Trump said.

The presidents shook hands. Cameras clicked. Then Sisi spoke, in Arabic, with a translator to his right repeating his comments in English.

"This is my first state visit to the United States since my inauguration,” and, he noted, the first visit of an Egyptian president to the US in eight years.

Since they met in September, he said, “I’ve had a deep appreciation and admiration of your unique personality” and the fact that Trump has been “standing very strong … to counter this evil ideology.”

Trump’s predecessor shunned Sisi, the former army general who overthrew a democratically-elected Muslim Brotherhood president in 2013.

Trump:

“We will fight terrorism and other things. We’re going to be friends for a long long period of time. We have a great bond with the people of Egypt. … I look forward to a very long and strong relationship.”

Trump made no mention of human rights or military and economic aid.

He ignored questions as pool left. He seemed to listen intently and think about answering a question about whether he would declare Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist group, but said nothing. He ignored other questions about whether he had spoken with Putin about the St. Petersburg attack, and another about the “witch hunt” claim.

Pool was quickly recalled for a photo spray in the Cabinet room. More tk.

Todd J. Gillman
Washington Bureau Chief
The Dallas Morning News
529 14th Street NW, suite 930
Washington, DC 20045
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202/xxx-xxx-xxxx cell
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