On the morning of Thursday, January 9, 2014, Ambassador Mutazz Ahmedayn Khalil, Egypt’s permanent representative to the UN, met with Bahey eldin Hassan, the director of the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies. The meeting was held following an invitation from Ambassador Khalil, who is stationed at the office of the Egyptian delegation to the UN in New York.
According to Hassan, the meeting dealt with ways to strengthen Egypt’s relations with the UN and the country’s international status. Hassan offered several specific proposals to this end, including that Egypt needs to fundamentally reconsider the way it manages its international relations and listen to the voices of reason in the Egyptian administration, particularly Deputy Prime Minister Ziad Bahaa al-Din and Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmi. Even while noting his appreciation of the generous financial aid offered by several Arab countries, he nevertheless stated that no amount of money will be able to improve Egypt’s international or regional stature. The only way to reclaim the respect of the world, Hassan said, is to heed the voices of reason at home. Hassan wondered how the doors of the UN would be opened to welcome Egypt if Cairo closed the door to voices of UN representatives in New York and Geneva. Hassan stressed that countering terrorism, the protection and promotion of human rights, steps toward economic regeneration, and opening up to the world were all part of one package and must be pursued simultaneously by Egypt; otherwise, the country will continue to lose ground on all fronts.
Hassan arrived for meetings at the UN yesterday. He met with Jeffrey Feltman, the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, and Taye-Brook Zerihoun, the Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs, as well as three officials in the African division.
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