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Wednesday, 14 September 2022

Egypt to take charge of US-led Red Sea task force in November

The Egyptian navy will take command of the US-led Red Sea taskforce from November, the US military said Monday following talks between Centcom commander Gen. Michael Kurilla and Defense Minister Mohamed Zaki in Cairo. Task Force 153 was set up in April by a US-led coalition to patrol the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden. Egypt joined the group last year, becoming its 34th member.

Fast-tracked arms: Kurilla pledged to work with the US government “to expedite the bureaucratic and cumbersome foreign military sales process with partners in the Middle East.” His predecessor in March expressed optimism that the US would provide Egypt with long-awaited F-15 fighter jets, but described the process as “a long, hard slog.” US military sales and aid to Egypt are a regular source of controversy on the Hill, with some lawmakers calling to withhold arms on human rights grounds.

Climate talks with Singapore’s senior minister: Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, Environment Minister Yasmine Fouad and Egypt’s high-level climate champion Mahmoud Mohieldin discussed preparations for COP27 with Singapore Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean during his visit to Cairo this week, Singapore’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement. Mohieldin and Teo discussed setting up local carbon markets and the use of blended finance to fund climate projects in the developing world.

Egypt backs China on Xinjiang: Egypt was among 21 countries to sign a statement criticizing a recent UN report which accused Beijing of “systematic” and “grave” human rights violations against ethnic Uyghurs in Xinjiang province, Reuters reports.

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