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Egyptian president meets regional leaders in coastal town

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Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has met with the leaders of Iraq, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, his office said, as world powers and Iran seek to end a 16-month of negotiations on the relaunch of the historic nuclear agreement in Tehran.

El-Sisi and Emirati President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan received King Abdullah II of Jordan, Iraqi interim Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi and King of Bahrain Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa on Monday at the airport in the Mediterranean city of ‘el-Alamein.

The UAE leader arrived in the coastal city a day earlier and held separate talks with his Egyptian counterpart that focused on ties between regional allies, el-Sisi’s office said.

The five-party talks focused on consolidating ties and cooperation between their countries, according to an Egyptian statement, which did not give details.

Earlier in the day, an Iraqi statement said the talks would focus on regional security as well as energy, investment and climate change.

The meeting took place in el-Alamein, the scene of one of the fiercest battles of World War II which helped decide the outcome of the conflict.

Neither statement mentioned Iran and ongoing efforts to revive its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

Many Gulf countries – Saudi Arabia in particular – are very concerned about Iran’s activity in the region. They fear the revival of the 2015 deal will include economic relief for the hardline regime in Tehran, allowing it to expand its interference in their internal affairs.

Iraq has hosted several rounds of talks between Iran and regional rival Saudi Arabia, whose ties soured significantly in 2016.

That’s when Saudi Arabia fired its diplomats after protesters attacked its embassy in Tehran and consulate in Mashhad in retaliation for the kingdom’s execution of a prominent Shia cleric.

Talks have also taken place recently between Iran and Egypt as the two governments explore ways to ease decades-long tensions. Diplomatic relations between Egypt and Iran were frozen after Egypt signed its 1979 peace treaty with Israel and Iran underwent its Islamic revolution.

(This story has not been edited by the Devdiscourse team and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)