Russian foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, will meet key figures in Cairo on Sunday. They will discuss Libya, Syria and counter-terrorism, among other issues.
In his two day trip, Lavrov will meet President Mohamed Morsy and Foreign Minister Mohamed Amr. He will also attend a joint meeting with the Secretary General of the Arab League, Nabil El Araby, and Joint Special Envoy to Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi.
A press briefing published by the Russian ministry of foreign affairs last week confirmed that Lavrov will be visiting Cairo for two days before continuing on to Jordan. It confirmed that the purpose of these meetings is to “thoroughly discuss prospects for further development of bilateral relations. Special attention will be paid to problems of increasing cooperation in trade, economic, cultural and humanitarian spheres.”
Lavarov will focus on current issues in the Middle East and North Africa region including the situation in Syria, Libya and the Arab-Israeli peace process. He will also discuss a variety of international issues “including nuclear non-proliferation, counter-terrorism challenges, and other modern global threats.”
On Sunday evening Lavarov will meet with El Araby and “address the key issues of international and regional issues, discussed the way forward to work together to promote the cooperation between Russia and the Arab League.” The Arab League has confirmed Brahimi will be present at this meeting.
Brahimi and Lavrov met last Monday in Moscow to discuss the ongoing situation in Syria. In a press conference following their meeting, Lavrov confirmed support for Brahimi’s diplomatic efforts and expressed disappointment at the inability to maintain a ceasefire over the Eid Al-Adha feast. Lavrov also asserted that Russia is the only country from the Action Group on Syria, “speaks regularly with all the Syrian sides: both the government and all the opposition groups, without exception.”
Russia, along with China has used its veto as a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) blocking resolutions on sanctions on Syria. In a recent appearance at the Istanbul World Forum, El Araby criticised the UNSC veto system and called for it to be reformed.
Lavrov will travel to Jordan on Monday to discuss trade and economic relations with his counterpart. He will also meet with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to discuss “a lasting solution to the Palestinian issue.”