Egypt and Africa: Looking up the Nile

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Egypt and Africa


After decades of ignoring Africa, Egypt is re-engaging with the continent



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THREE characteristics define Egypt, claimed Gamal Abdel Nasser, its charismatic former president. The country is Arab and Muslim, to be sure. But the third feature, Nasser implied, is not as well recognised. “Can we possibly ignore the fact that there is an African continent that fate decreed us to be part of?” he asked. Nasser embraced Africa, fostering leaders who sought to emulate his Egyptian revolution.
More recently, though, Egypt has withdrawn from the continent. The relationship turned sour when Hosni Mubarak, Egypt’s then president, was almost assassinated in Ethiopia in 1995. For the next 16 years Mr Mubarak shunned African summits. When he was finally booted out of office in 2011, the country’s Africa …<div class="og_rss_groups"></div>