Report: Egypt Cooperating with China on Satellites, Nukes
Egypt has launched projects in the field of nuclear research and remote-sensing satellites with China, says a report by Middle East Newsline (MENL).
Egyptian officials were quoted by the news service as saying the projects focused on research and technology rather than the development of systems. They said China had agreed to increase such cooperation with Egypt.
Relations between China and Egypt included those "in the field of scientific and technological cooperation, through the exchange of visits by researchers from both sides and through new joint programs for scientific cooperation in various fields including remote sensing, space technology," Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was quoted as saying in an interview with the Chinese Xinhua news agency.
Mubarak said Egypt wanted to expand its industrial technological base through cooperation with China. He said he would discuss these and other issues during a visit to Beijing by the end of the year.
Egypt has been criticized by US lawmakers for its military plans.
A secret delegation from the Egyptian Defense Ministry recently visited Washington for talks on Egypt's ballistic missile deals with North Korea, according to a report by Haaretz on July 15.
According to the paper, the visit to the US followed American concerns that Cairo and Pyongyang had signed a deal for the delivery of No-Dong ballistic missile technology to Egypt. The No-Dong's operational range is 800 kilometers.
No details were made available about the nature of the talks, but sources told the paper that the Americans were provided with "satisfactory" responses to their inquiries.
Earlier in July, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak denied US intelligence reports that his country aimed to produce the intermediate-range missiles.
In the first public reference to the matter by the president, Mubarak said his regime was not interested in what he termed long-range missiles.
Mubarak told the Al Mussawar magazine that Egypt had no use for such a program, because Cairo did not harbor hostile intentions toward any country.
Western diplomatic sources were quoted by MENL as saying Mubarak relayed a similar message during his visit to Washington in March. At the time, Mubarak met President George Bush, senior administration officials and congressional leaders.
The news service also reported then that Mubarak appeared "relieved" over initial congressional approval to continue US military aid to Egypt.
Egypt allegedly sought 50 engines from North Korea to power the missile.
US officials reported that North Korea had tested an engine used in the long-range Taepo Dong-1 missile program. The test was said to have been the most significant development in North Korea's missile development program since 1998, said MENL.
However, Israel said it had no concerns over a potential Egyptian threat related to its alleged program.
Each year, Egypt receives $1.3 billion in US military aid and about $630 million in civilian aid - Albawaba.com
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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