Trump to host Egypt's Sisi on April 9: White House

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump holds a bilateral meeting with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi on the sidelines of the 73rd United Nations General Assembly in New York, U.S., September 24, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump will host Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi at the White House on April 9 for talks on strengthening their strategic partnership and working on shared priorities in the Middle East, the White House said on Friday.

The White House said in a statement the two leaders would discuss “building on our robust military, economic and counterterrorism cooperation” as well as regional economic integration and “Egypt’s longstanding role as a lynchpin of regional stability.”

The visit by al Sisi comes at a time of renewed tensions between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza after a rocket fired from the coastal enclave wounded seven Israelis near Tel Aviv.

Israel responded with air strikes and warnings from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that Israel was prepared to wage a broad military campaign in Gaza if needed.

Trump on Monday signed a decree recognizing Israel’s annexation of the Golan Heights, captured from Syria in the 1967 war. The decision, which was criticized by Arab states, came as Israel gears up for elections on April 9.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the Golan decision would help resolve the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians by removing uncertainty. White House advisers Jared Kushner and Jason Greenblatt have been working to put together a peace proposal to address the conflict.

Reporting by David Alexander; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Bill Trott

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