Germany, Egypt to Sign Deal on Trading Secret Military Documents
German Defense Minister Rudolf Scharping said here Monday that Egypt and Germany will sign a deal here on exchanging military documents as part of increased military cooperation.
Scharping said the agreement was "part of cooperation in security matters between the two countries which has improved in the last few years" and will be signed during his three-day visit to Egypt.
But the defense minister, who was speaking to reporters through an Arabic interpreter after meeting Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and his counterpart Mohammed Hussein Tantawi, did not elaborate on the deal.
German embassy officials minimized the importance of the agreement as a "bureacratic measure" authorizing such an exchange of documents that did not previously exist.
"With this agreement between the German and Egyptian military establishments, it will be possible to exchange classified documents," the spokesman for the German embassy in Cairo, Oliver Mombartz, told AFP.
However, he added: "Normally these documents are not exchanged. It's a bureaucratic measure. It's nothing unusual."
Thirty Egyptian officers were sent to Germany this year for training amid bilateral cooperation.
Scharping will travel to Israel on Wednesday where he will meet Prime Minister Ehud Barak, and in Gaza with Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, Germany embassy officials said.
During his stay in Cairo, Scharping is also due to meet with Prime Minister Atef Ebeid, Foreign Minister Amr Mussa, and Arab League Secretary General Esmat Abdel Meguid -- CAIRO (AFP)
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