Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Italian Parliament Decision Triggers Egyptian Countermeasures | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Protesters opposing President Mohamed Mursi at Tahrir Square in Cairo June 30, 2013. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

Cairo-Egypt has announced there will be countermeasures in response to Italy’s decision to stop supplying Egyptian F16s with spare parts following the torture and murder of Italian student Giulio Regeni.

Egypt let go of its diplomatic caution, saying that this move will “negatively affect cooperation with Italy in the field of countering illegal immigration in the Mediterranean”.

Retired Major General Kamal Amer, chairman of parliament’s Defense and National Security Committee, told Asharq Al-Awsat on Thursday that the political influence of the Italian parliament decision is more significant than the military and economy one. Amer called for tackling the crisis in a rational way.

Actually, this Italian move is considered the first commercial measure taken by Italy against Egypt over the issue.

“Egypt is dissatisfied with the parliament decision to halve the supply of spare parts for fighter jets against the backdrop of the Regeni homicide,” the interior ministry said in a statement issued on Thursday.

“This is not in line with cooperation between the authorities of the two countries that are probing the Regeni case, nor with the special relationship between our countries”, the statement added.

“Egyptian and Italian investigation parties carried out mutual visits throughout the past weeks and months. The Italian party received hundreds of documents that reveal the investigation results; yet the fate of missing Egyptian Adel Mouawad remains unknown as well as the reason behind murdering Mohammed Sobhi in Italy” commented the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Regeni was reported dead in a car accident by an Egyptian police officer in February 2015; however the forensic expert’s report revealed torture signs on the corpse. This compelled organizations and activists to accuse the Ministry of Interior of being involved in the homicide.