Mubarak, Khatami Talk for First Time in two Decades

Published June 22nd, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Iranian and Egyptian presidents spoke by telephone in the first direct contact between the leaders of the two states since the time of Iran's Islamic revolution, reported The Associated Press.  

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak congratulated Mohammad Khatami on Iran's accession to the G-15 group of nations, said the AP.  

Mubarak expressed the hope that relations between Iran and Egypt would further develop, the agency said.  

Iran and Egypt broke relations in 1979 after the new Islamic government in Tehran condemned Egypt's peace treaty with Israel that year. Relations also deteriorated because Egypt gave refuge to the ousted Iranian shah, who died in Egypt in 1980, added the agency.  

Mubarak was host chairman of the G-15 summit that admitted Iran to the group of developing nations from Africa, Asia and Latin America. The two-day summit finished in Cairo on Tuesday.  

Khatami said Iran and Egypt are two large countries with ancient civilizations that helped form Islamic civilization and he hoped they would try to strengthen their relations, the agency reported.  

Recently, relations have begun to improve, but there are still obstacles on the road to full normalization.  

Egypt insists that Iran must rename a street in Tehran that is named after Khaled al-Islambouli, a Muslim militant army officer who assassinated Egypt's President Anwar Sadat in 1981, said the agency –  


© 2000 Al Bawaba (

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