President Mohammad Khatami described on Saturday Iran and Egypt as the “two arms of the Islamic civilization,” saying Egypt had a special status among Muslim and Arab countries.
Khatami’s remarks came at a press conference in Tehran, said the official Iranian news agency, IRNA.
Khatami said that “removal of misunderstanding between the governments’ relations is not the matter of the day. As you know, relations between Iran and Egypt have suffered political strain, but cultural [and] economic relations are continuing and the intellectual exchanges have been encouraged.”
"I hope that in the near future, we will be able to have a better diplomatic relations with Egypt on the principles we have, in line with the détente policy and the other criteria," he said.
"Egypt is important to us. The Egyptian nation also regards Iran as important. We put emphasis on developing cooperation with Egypt in different areas," the president said.
Tehran-Cairo ties have significantly warmed since June 2000, when President Mohammad Khatami spoke by phone with his Egyptian counterpart Hosni Mubarak, the first such conversation by the presidents of the two countries since they broke ties in 1979 after Egypt signed the Camp David peace treaty with Israel.
The Islamic republic still refuses to officially recognize Israel – Albawaba.com