Egypt and Yemen
Monday، 08 November 2010 12:00 AM
Egyptian-Yemeni relations date back hundreds of years, representing a historical relationship since ancient times. One of the oldest evidences confirming those deep-rooted relations between the two countries is that the Egyptian Emperor Thutmose III received a gift from Sabaean merchants "relative to the Kingdom of Sheba, which is Yemen now" as well as the Yemeni merchants were the main suppliers of the incense of the ancient Egyptian temples.
Egypt represents the main pillar of the Arab countries and plays an important role in maintaining the security and stability of the Arab countries and the entire Arab region. In this respect, both Egypt and Yemen played an important role in the establishment of the Arab League, and Egypt participated in the era of President Abdel Nasser in the Yemeni war, while Yemen stood by Egypt in the October 1973 war against the Israeli occupation.
Yemen has an important and distinct geographical location concerning the security of the Arab Gulf, which represents an important pillar of the Egyptian national security, as it overlooks Bab el-Mandab Strait that recently represented great importance to the countries of the world after the establishment of the Suez Canal. Accordingly, Yemen represents a special importance to Egypt in terms of its important and distinguished position in preserving Egyptian interests and not endangering Egyptian national security, in addition to protecting Bab el-Mandab Strait from any threats that may harm Egyptian interests. This was sound clear in Egypt's participation in the international coalition in Yemen against armed groups.
The Egyptian position on the Yemeni crisis
Egypt asserted the importance of Gulf security and its support to Saudi Arabia in its stance against the Houthi militia in Yemen in support of the political legitimacy of President Mansour Hadi and the Yemeni constitution.
Egypt secured its interests in Bab el-Mandab Strait for fear of the unstable conditions in Yemen and to maintain water security in the Suez Canal.
The Egyptian position towards the Yemeni crisis agrees with the Saudi position, in particular, and the Gulf position, in general. However, the Egyptian position is generally characterized by being stable towards the Yemeni crisis since its beginning due to its importance as regards the Gulf and Egyptian national security.
Egypt provided political support to the authority of President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi, as Cairo took a decision on February 23, 2015 to close its embassy in the capital, Sanaa, after armed groups had taken control of it and in line with the Gulf and international positions to close their embassies as well. Also, the Foreign Ministry affirmed the support to legitimate institutions and state symbols, stressing that all parties should abide by the means of dialogue, avoid the use of violence the Gulf initiative and commit to the Gulf initiative, the outcomes of the National Dialogue, the Peace and National Partnership Agreement, and Security Council resolutions regarding the crisis in Yemen. In continuation of the political support for the legitimate authority in Yemen and in line with regional and international positions, Egypt announced the reopening of its embassy in the city of Aden after President Mansour Hadi made it his headquarters.
Egypt supported the military operation in Yemen, after Saudi Arabia had announced directing a military campaign, which is called the “Decisive Storm”, against the Houthi strong holds in Yemen. In this respect, Egypt announced its full support to the military campaign as well as its participation in the campaign that consisted of the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, Egypt, Morocco, Sudan and Jordan, with international support from Security Council.
Egypt asserted the commitment to the Gulf Initiative, as the Egyptian Foreign Ministry stressed the need to adhere to a political solution based on the Gulf initiative, its implementation mechanisms and the relevant Security Council resolutions. It, also, confirmed the necessity of restoring the legitimacy and adhering to the foundations of dialogue as well as the road map and a peaceful transfer of power to achieve the interests of the Yemeni society.
The Egyptian-Yemeni relations are characterized by a great deal of distinction and privacy, as the Egyptians have been keen since the era of the Pharaohs to establish strong political relations, because the ancient Egyptians understood Yemen's unique location on the Red Sea and its control over the ancient trade routes. King Thutmose III was keen to send and receive gifts from the Sabean merchants and the Yemeni merchants were the main supplier of incense to ancient Egyptian temples.
In the modern era, Muhammad Ali Pasha was keen to extend the influence of the Egyptian state to Yemen, strengthen trade relations and exchange goods between the two countries, impose control of the Egyptian state on trade routes in the Red Sea, and establish a strong Egyptian fleet that controlled the Red Sea.
In the sixties of the last century the bonds of the relationship between the two countries were strengthened after Egypt's complete support to the Yemeni revolution, during the rule of President Gamal Abdel Nasser, ,as Egyptian forces participated in supporting the Yemeni revolution in getting rid of the British colonialism in the south and the reactionary regime of Imam.
Egyptian-Yemeni relations during the era of the late President Gamal Abdel Nasser:
President Abdel Nasser supported the Yemeni revolution militarily with Egyptian armed forces in a major operation called Al-Kodi (Operation 9000). Egypt, also, undertook the task of introducing modernization to Yemen by establishing a state body for the first time in Yemen’s history, in addition to establishing hospitals, schools, roads, ports and airports in order to take Yemen to the twentieth century. These developments triggered the revolution in Aden and South Yemen, which Egypt completely supported in an operation code-named Salah al-Din.
Not only did Abdel Nasser succeed in obtaining recognition by the United States of the government of the revolution in Yemen on December 19, 1962 in exchange of the withdrawal of all forces supporting the revolution and the Imam from Yemen, but also the commitment of US government to provide aid to the new government in Yemen.
The presence of the Egyptian army in Yemen to support the rebels led to the emergence of a dangerous situation in which Egypt controls the transportation route in the Red Sea from the north through the Suez Canal, and from the south through the Bab el-Mandab strait.
When President Gamal Abdel Nasser arrived in Yemen on April 23, 1964, the whole city of Sana’a; especially the Egyptian leadership building on the northern side, turned into a qibla to which all Yemeni tribes went to see Abdel Nasser. And when Abdel Nasser flew to Taiz in the south, he received a wonderful reception from the tribes of the Yemeni South and the tribes of South Yemen. History will always tell the results of this visit and its great impact on the stability of the Yemeni revolution internally and internationally. However, England informed the United Nations that President Jamal’s speeches in Yemen caused the inability to reach a solution concerning the issues of southern Yemen.
Despite all the conspiracies against the Yemeni revolution and despite the disaster of June 1967, the Republic of Yemen was established and the Yemeni people got rid of the rule of the Imamate, and the winds of change blew over the Arab Gulf region, so all Gulf emirates became independent and the colonial presence in the region came to an end.
The state of South Yemen came into existence as an independent state. Later, North and South Yemen were united into one state, and then with the Arab control of Bab el-Mandab, Nasser’s dream was fulfilled, as the Red Sea became a truly Arab sea.
And because of the Egyptian army’s presence in Yemen near the sources of oil, oil companies changed their methods of dealing with oil governments, giving them a greater share of their stolen wealth.
Yemen was a vital focal point in the Egyptian and Arab national security by virtue of its strategic location in the south of the Red Sea overlooking Sudan, the Horn of Africa and Bab el-Mandab. Therefore, the revolution in Egypt realized soon that any political change in Yemen could impact the national liberation movement in the entire Arab world.
Egypt's support to the Yemeni revolution did not start on the night of September 26, 1962, and it was not just a reaction to the secession or an expression of a desire to restore balance in favor of the national mainstream, but Yemen was always in the minds of the July revolutionaries since the beginning of the revolution.
In brief, Egypt stood by the revolution in Yemen for the right of peoples to determine their destiny, and it is one of the battles of the continuous conflict, which will never end between the Arab national movement and the world powers. If it were not for Egypt's positions towards the revolution and its assistance to all liberation movements, Egypt would have neither been the elder sister nor the symbol of pride and liberation, for Egypt's position on the international, Arab and African levels is marked by the blood of its martyrs in Palestine, Algeria, Yemen and Sinai. It is worth mentioning that Egypt's Arab role was not created by Gamal Abdel Nasser from scratch. However, the Arab role of Egypt is known and attested very much before, and whoever denies that role does not realize Egypt’s position and the role that is destined for it as Egypt.
Egyptian-Yemeni relations during the era of the late President Mohamed Anwar Sadat
Sadat used to visit Yemen after the revolution of September 26, 1962. He was in charge of the Yemen file before Abdel Nasser. Sadat was baffled among the divisions of the Republicans in Sana'a, i.e., the two wings of Al-Sallal and his dominant movement on the one hand, and the movement of Al-Qadi Al-Eryani, Al-Nu`man and Hassan Al-Omari on the other.
Sadat had intermarriage relations with Yemen, since Dr. Abdul Rahman Al-Baidani, Vice President of the Revolutionary Command, Vice President of the Republic, and former Prime Minister of Yemen is married to Jihan Sadat's sister.
Yemen played a great role in the October 1973 war against the Israeli occupation, as Yemen closed cross the Bab el-Mandab Strait in face of Israel. Lieutenant General Fouad Zekry moved three Egyptian naval vessels to the Bab el-Mandab Strait, in complete secrecy, at points that allow them to radically monitor and inspect the movement of all vessels crossing the Red Sea, and not a single Israeli military ship dared to cross the Bab el-Mandab Strait throughout the siege.
This is an undeniable role for Yemen, without it, Egypt would not have been able to close the Strait of Bab el-Mandab and prevent the passage of any warships during the war.
The Yemeni first lieutenant pilot, Omar Ghaylan Al-Sharjabi had an extraordinary heroic achievement, as he volunteered during the October 1973 war to serve in the Syrian Arab Air Force, where he attacked one of the Israeli Phantoms smashing it down and stroked Israeli supply sites, which were completely destroyed in Tiberias, south of Mount Hermon.
Egyptian-Yemeni relations during the era of the late President Mohamed Hosni Mubarak
Egyptian-Yemeni relations during the era of the late President Hosni Mubarak witnessed strong ties between the two brotherly countries, as there were strong brotherly relations between President Mubarak and President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
President Ali Abdullah Saleh said: We in the Republic of Yemen, the leadership, government and people, highly value Egypt's stances and leadership in favour of Yemen, its security, stability and unity. This is not strange for Egypt, which has always stood by its brothers in Yemen in the darkest circumstances and twists. Also, the Yemeni blood mixed with Egyptian blood on the soil of Yemen In defense of the Yemeni revolution.
President Mubarak visited Yemen in 1988, where he was received by President Ali Abdullah Saleh, The two presidents discussed ways to support bilateral relations between the two countries.
- On February 18, 1991, President Mubarak visited Yemen, received by President Ali Abdullah Saleh, and the two presidents discussed developments in the Gulf War and the Iraqi initiative.
- The year 2004 witnessed the beginning of a new phase in the relations between the two countries after the visit of the Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh to Cairo on 10/2/2004, where he was received by President Mubarak. The two heads of state settled some pending issues, including the issue of terrorism and the extradition of extremist elements.
- On June 27, 2007, President Ali Abdullah Saleh visited Egypt at the invitation of President Hosni Mubarak. The talks focused on the distinguished brotherly relations between the two countries and the means of developing and expanding areas of bilateral cooperation in a way that serves the common interests of the two brotherly countries. The two presidents, also, discussed the developments in the Arab arena, especially those in Palestine, Iraq, Darfur, Lebanon and Somalia.
- On November 10, 2007, President Ali Abdullah Saleh visited Egypt, in response to President Mubarak's invitation to participate in the opening ceremony of the 11th Pan Arab Games that took place in Cairo, Egypt from 11 to 25, 2007. The two presidents held talks on ways to strengthen relations and areas of Joint cooperation between the two brotherly countries, in addition to consultation and exchange of views regarding the current Arab developments as well as regional and international developments that concern the Arab nation.
- On October 2nd, 2008, President Ali Abdullah Saleh visited Egypt, where he was received by President Mubarak, and the two sides discussed developments in the Middle East region and ways to boost relations between the two countries.
On April 19, 2010, President Ali Abdullah Saleh visited Egypt and he was received by President Mubarak, who confirmed Egypt's stance in support of Yemen, its security, stability and unity.
In the meeting, the two presidents discussed aspects of bilateral relations between the two countries, as well as the Yemeni and Egyptian peoples including ways to enhance and develop them. They, also, discussed on issues and developments on the Arab and regional arenas, which concern the two countries as well as the Arab nation, salient of which are the results of the 22nd Arab Summit held in the Libyan city of Sirte and the efforts made to push the march of joint Arab action and develop its mechanisms.
Yemen's stance regarding 25 January Revolution
On 12/2/2011, Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh made a phone call to Defense Minister Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, Chairman of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, in which he affirmed his country's stand by Egypt and the aspirations of the Egyptian people for freedom, democracy and renaissance.
Thousands of Yemenis took to the streets in Sanaa and a number of Yemeni cities to express their joy at the success of the Egyptian revolution.
Egyptian-Yemeni relations after June 30, 2013 Revolution
After June 30, 2013 Revolution, Egypt was keen on the return of joint Arab action as a basis for solving the problems of the Arab region. Egypt believes that Arab national security is closely related to Egyptian national security. Egypt is always affirming that Gulf security is an integral part of its national security. Egypt has participated in the Decisive Storm operation upon the request of the recognized Yemeni President, Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi.
On the Yemeni crisis, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi affirmed that a united, capable, just and modern state is the only way to overcome crises and achieve the legitimate aspirations in Yemen and all the Arab peoples.
- After the Yemeni Revolution in February 2011, the Egyptian position was always based on supporting Yemen's territorial integrity and welcoming all UN and Security Council resolutions on Yemen, as well as supporting a peaceful settlement and national dialogue to reach a consensual solution.
- On 7/9/2014, Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry met with his Yemeni counterpart Jamal al-Salal on the sidelines of the Arab League ministerial council. During the meeting, Salal conveyed Yemeni President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi's greetings to his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah El Sisi.
- On February 23, 2015, Cairo decided to close its embassy in the capital Sana'a after the armed groups got the control over the country and in accordance with the Gulf and international stands to close the embassies in the capital Sana'a. The Foreign Ministry stressed the support for the legitimate institutions and symbols of the state and stressed the commitment of all parties to peaceful means and dialogue. Egypt announced the opening of its embassy in Aden as a continuation of the political support for the legitimate authority in Yemen after President Mansour Hadi, took over the city. Egypt backed the Saudi-led Operation Decisive Storm against Houthi fighters in Iran-backed Houthis, a move backing Yemeni legitimacy. In addition, Egypt stood firmly against Iranian intervention in Yemen and its support for the Badr al-Din al-Houthi group. Egypt announced its cessation against the Shiite tide in the region and left the freedom of of choice to the Yemeni people.
- The Egyptian Foreign Ministry affirmed Cairo's support for the legitimate state, believing that the future of Yemen should be determined by consensus among the various political parties. It also stressed the importance of the commitment of all Yemeni political parties to continue the political dialogue under the auspices of the UN on the basis of the Gulf initiative as the only way to resolve the current crises of the country. This was reflected in the reception of President al-Sisi to the Vice President of the Republic of Yemen and Prime Minister Khalid Bahah in July 2015, as well as the Prime Minister meeting with Baha during his last visit to Cairo in June 2015.
- On 9/4/2020, Egypt welcomed the two-week ceasefire declared by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen in a bid to stem the spread of the novel coronavirus in the war-torn country. The Foreign Ministry said in a statement that Egypt lauds this key initiative and hopes it would pave the way for implementing the UN special envoy to Yemen’s call for a meeting between the country’s legitimate government and Houthi elements. The UN envoy has said such a meeting would discuss steps and mechanisms to implement a permanent ceasefire in Yemen and resume political talks with the aim of hammering out a comprehensive political solution to the Yemeni crisis. The statement noted that Cairo supports the ceasefire initiative as it helps achieve peace, security and stability in Yemen.It will also contribute to maintaining Yemeni unity and territorial integrity as well as easing the suffering of its people, the statement added.
- On 27/4/2020, Egypt underscored the importance of adhering to all articles related to the Riyadh Agreement on Yemen and nulling out any step-in contrary to the accord. The Foreign Ministry hailed, in a statement, the Coalition to Restore Legitimacy in Yemen's statement on the Saudi brokered agreement. Egypt also called for accelerating the implementation of the agreements' articles favoring the Yemeni people's interests as well as efforts meant to restore the country's sovereignty and eradicate all terror groups, according to the statement. Moreover, Egypt reinstated support to Saudi Arabia and the UAE in their pursue to maintain peace and stability in Yemen, the statement said.
- On 23/6/2020, Egypt welcomed an announcement by the Saudi-led Coalition to Support legitimacy in Yemen that the legitimate Yemeni government and the Southern Transitional Council have approved a comprehensive ceasefire and stopping of escalations in Yemen. Egypt also welcomed the stance by the two sides approving to participate in a meeting in Saudi Arabia to discuss means of implementing the Riyadh Agreement. Egypt also appreciated efforts made by Saudi Arabia for supporting the Yemeni people and expressed confidence that these efforts will lead to resuming the political process by the Yemeni parties for reaching a political solution to the Yemeni crisis. The Foreign Ministry confirmed in its statement Egypt's support for all efforts that are aimed at achieving peace, security and stability in Yemen and guarantees its unity.
- On 9/7/2020, Egyptian Ambassador to Saudi Arabia and Yemen Ahmed Farouk handed over a letter from Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli to Yemeni Prime Minister Maeen Abdulmalik. The letter included an invitation to visit Cairo as soon as possible for consultations and discussions over the best way to boost mutual relations. Abdulmalik hailed Egypt’s support to Yemen and expressed his keenness on visiting Egypt to discuss boosting ties. Farouk also met with Yemeni Speaker of Parliament Sultan al-Barakani as they discussed the implementation of Riyadh agreement to end the Yemeni crisis. During the meeting, Barakani hailed Egypt’s role and support to Yemen and Yemeni expatriates in Egypt.
- On 28/9/2020, Egypt welcomed a prisoner exchange agreement signed ٍSunday between the Yemeni government and the Houthi group to immediately release 1,081 conflict-related detainees. Egypt commended the keen efforts exerted by the UN special envoy for Yemen and the International Committee of the Red Cross to strike the deal. Egypt called upon the parties involved to promptly implement of the prisoner swap deal in line with the provisions of the Stockholm Agreement, signed in December 2018 by the warring parties in Yemen, to support confidence-building measures and bring about a political settlement to the extended crisis in the conflict-torn country.
Visits of the Presidents
- On 27/3/2015, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi received Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi who arrived in Sharm El Sheikh to take part in the 26th meeting of the Arab summit .
- On 5/8/2015, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi received Yemeni President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi who is currently in Egypt to take part in the inauguration of the New Suez Canal.
- On 13/8/2018, President Abdel Fatah El Sisi received Yemen's President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi at the Ittihadiya presidential palace, which will be followed by a press conference. The two Presidents held a bilateral meeting followed by extensive discussions between the two countries' delegations. They discussed mutual cooperation between the two countries to enhance the protection of maritime navigation in the Red Sea and Bab al-Mandab Strait to avoid being negatively affected by the current situation in Yemen. President Sisi and the Yemeni President witnessed the signing ceremony of a memorandum of understanding between the Central Bank of Egypt and the Yemeni Central Bank on cooperation in the banking sector, especially in the field of exchange of skills and training of officials in this sector.
Abdel Malek El mekhlafy-Yemeni foreign minister was received in Egypt by foreign ministry Sameh Shoukry and they discussed the distinctive bilateral relations between the two countries and the Egyptian stand supporting the Yemeni brothers in their current hard times. This is highly reflected in the types of assistance Egypt offered to the Yemeni People represented in medicines ,medical equipments and vaccines. The two countries assessed the recent political situation and power balance in Yemen in general.
UN envoy to Yemen Ismaïl Ould Cheikh Ahmed visited Egypt and minister of foreign Affairs received him. The both discussed the latest developments in Yemen and the exerted efforts to reach a solution.
Abdel Malek El Mekhlafy-Yemeni foreign minister visited Egypt and he was received by his counterpart Sameh Shoukry .Both exchanged their viewpoints concerning the new USA administration.
Major General Hussein Mohamed Arab –deputy prime minister and minister of Interior visited Egypt and he was received by the Egyptian minister of interior M.G Magdy Abdel Ghaffar. They discussed the continuity of communication and coordination regarding the exchange of information on terrorist entities.
Dr. Ahmed Ebeid Bin Dagher,prime minister of Yemen headed a delegation comprising ministers of interior, tourism, health and immigrates' affairs visited Egypt and they were received by president Abdel Fattah El Sisi. They handled by discussion issues of mutual concern on bilateral relations and means to intensify consultation and coordination between the two countries.
On 5/8/2015, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi received Yemeni President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi who is currently in Egypt to take part in the inauguration of the New Suez Canal.
On 12/7/2015, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi received Yemeni Vice President Khaled Bahah. Attending the meeting were the Yemeni ministers of planning, international cooperation, human rights and interior along with the Yemeni delegate to the Arab League. Sisi affirmed Egypt's constant support for Yemen and all the efforts exerted to preserve Yemen's security and stability.
On 17/6/2015, Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab received his Yemeni counterpart Khalid Bahah. During a meeting, Mahlab called for resuming sessions of the joint higher committee to bolster bilateral relations in all fields.
On 23/5/2015, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi received Yemeni President Abdel Rabou Mansour Hadi's personal envoy in the presence of Yemen's Permanent Delegate to the Arab League Ambassador Mohammad Al Haisami. The President stressed profound relations binding Egypt and Yemen at both the popular and official levels.
On 27/3/2015, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi received Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi who arrived in Sharm El Sheikh to take part in the 26th meeting of the Arab summit.
On 7/9/2014, Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry met with his Yemeni counterpart Jamal al-Salal on the sidelines of the Arab League ministerial council. During the meeting, Salal conveyed Yemeni President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi's greetings to his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah El Sisi.
Mutual delegations’ visits
- On 7/9/2014, the Yemeni Foreign Affairs Minister visited Egypt to attend the Ministerial Council of Arab League, which was held in Cairo.
- On 12/12/2014, Dr. Izz El-Din Al-Asbahi, Yemeni Minister of Human Rights, visited Egypt, and was received by Sameh Shoukry, Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Shoukry stressed that Egypt is ready to provide training, technical support and capacity building to state institutions in Yemen, stressing the importance of achieving security and stability in Yemen and facing any deterioration of the security situation there and slipping into a state of instability with the need to preserve Yemen’s unity and territorial integrity.
- On 16/1/2015, Abdullah Al-Sayedi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Yemen, visited Egypt, and President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi received him at the headquarters of the Republic. Al-Sayedi delivered a letter to Al-Sisi from Yemeni President Abd Rabbu Mansour, bearing an affirmation of the strength of the bilateral relations between the two countries, and the aspiration to strengthen them at all levels. The letter also addresses the most prominent political and security developments in Yemen.
- On May 23, 2015, Abdullah Al-Sayidi, the Personal Envoy of the Yemeni President, visited Egypt, and was received by President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, and the Yemeni envoy reviewed the latest developments in the Yemeni arena.
- On 17/6/2015, Yemeni Prime Minister Khaled Bahah and his accompanying delegation visited Egypt, and were received by M. Ibrahim Mahlab, Prime Minister. The two sides discussed ways to support bilateral relations between the two countries.
On 7/7/2015, a delegation from the Yemeni General People's Party headed by Aref Al-Zouka, Secretary General of the party, and the membership of Abu Bakr Al-Qirbi, former Yemeni Foreign Minister, and Yasser Al-Awadi, Assistant Secretary-General, visited Egypt. Ambassador Abdel-Rahman Salah, Assistant of Foreign Affairs minister for Arab Affairs met them.
- On 12/7/2015, M. Khaled Bahah, Vice President of the Republic and Prime Minister of Yemen, visited Egypt at the head of a high-ranking delegation to attend the meeting of the eighth session of the Joint Higher Committee between Egypt and Yemen.
Ibrahim Mahlab, Prime Minister received him, as this session witnessed the signing of a number of documents in important areas affecting the interests of the two brotherly peoples in the fields of education, higher education, media, youth and vanguards, health and medicine, in a way that supports the relations between the two countries.
- On August 15, 2016, Dr. Ahmed Obaid bin Dagher, Prime Minister of Yemen, at the head of a delegation that includes the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Tourism, Health and Expatriate Affairs, visited Egypt, received by President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
The two sides discussed a number of issues related to bilateral relations between the two countries, as well as ways to intensify consultation and coordination between the two sides in international organizations and forums.
- On 28/8/2016, Major General Hussein Muhammad Arab, Deputy of Prime Minister and Minister of Interior of Yemen, visited Egypt, and was received by Major General Magdy Abdel Ghaffar, Minister of Interior. The two sides agreed on the continuation of communication channels and continuous coordination with regard to the exchange of information on terrorist elements and entities.
- On 12/22/2016, Abdul-Malik Al-Mikhlafi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Yemen, visited Egypt, and was received by Sameh Shoukry, Minister of Foreign Affairs. The two sides exchanged views on relations with the new US administration.
- On 18/7/2017 the United Nations envoy to Yemen, Ismail Ould Sheikh Ahmed, visited Egypt, and was received by Sameh Shoukry, Minister of Foreign Affairs. The two sides discussed the latest developments in the Yemeni arena, and the efforts made to reach a solution to the current crisis.
- On April 29, 2018, Abdel-Malek Al-Mikhlafi visited Egypt, and was received by Sameh Shoukry, Minister of Foreign Affairs. The two sides discussed the distinguished bilateral relations and Egypt's keenness to support the stability of brotherly Yemen and stand by the Yemeni brothers during the current ordeal that the country is going through, which was evidenced by the aid that Egypt recently provided to the Yemeni people in terms of medicines, vaccines and medical supplies. The two sides assessed the political situation and the balance of power in the Yemeni arena in detail.
- On 9/3/2020, Eng. Ahmed bin Ahmed Al-Maysari, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior of Yemen, at the head of a delegation of his assistants visited Egypt, received by Major General Mahmoud Tawfiq, Minister of Interior. The two sides stressed during the meeting the necessity of continuing coordination and consultation on security issues of common concern through the relevant communication channels.
Egyptian –Yemeni Economic relation have witnessed a great development over past year .As their relations are governed by an integrated legal framework to regulate cooperation in all fields, especially economic and commercial ones.
During the period 13-17 May 2006, The Sixth Round of the Higher Egyptian-Yemeni Committee was held in Sanaa, under chairmanship of the Prime Ministers of both countries as co-chairs. The agreements, protocols, and memorandums of understanding signed at the end of the round.
The joint Egyptian-Yemeni Higher Committee held its sixth sessions headed by both the prime ministers of the two countries at Sana’a city. In which a lot of agreements; protocols; memorandum of understanding have been signed at the end of the session.
On 9/6/2009, a new headquarters for the Medical Counselor Office in the Egyptian Embassy has been inaugurated .It is fully managed at the expense of the Egyptian government and with highly experienced cadres, and aims to provide treatment services and medical consultations to all Yemeni people who wish to receive treatment in Egypt, in addition to exchanging experiences; training convoy and facilitate communication among universities in the two countries
The Yemeni embassy has conducted a lot of activities in augmenting Egyptian investment, as participating with companies; government agencies in envents,exhibition and economic activities that have been hosted by the two countries.
It resulted in the participation of thirty Egyptian company in October 2009 at Sanaa International Book Fair and several deals have been held in textile and food stuff fields.
The Yemeni embassy organized an exhibition for the Egyptian products that had been set up by an Egyptian private sector company in March 2009, in which 30 Egyptian companies participated.
On August 9, 2010, the Joint Egyptian Technical Committee for Oil, Gas and Mining Technical Commission finalized a project to establish a joint Egyptian petroleum company. It is considered the first of its kind between the two countries in petroleum field.
The Yemeni-Egyptian fisheries joint committee approved in its schedule on January 17th, 18th 2010 the establishment of a Yemeni-Egyptian joint company in fishery industry.
It also approved a specific mechanism to regulate fishing operations in accordance with the new Yemeni law, to consider a project to establish joint fishing companies, and to consider the issue of landing fish ships in Yemeni ports in accordance with the Yemeni law and that is to be done by establishing facilities in Yemeni ports that allow the landing process and preparing fish for export.
On 12th July 2015, the eighth High Egyptian -Yemeni joint committee was held at the headquarters of the Council of Ministers. The Egyptian side headed by Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahalab. Also, the Egyptian side was represented at the discussion by ministers: planning, health, transitional justice, international cooperation, and the interior. While the Yemeni side was chaired by Eng. Khalid Baek, Vice-President of the Republic and President of the Yemeni Prime Minister. The Yemeni side represented by ministers: planning, international cooperation, interior, and human rights.
Mahalab pointed out that the volume of trade between the two countries amounted to $906 million, while the Egyptian exports amounted to $888, and the Egyptian imports amounted to $18 million. Specifying that Yemeni contributions to 284 investment projects in Egypt up to 2014 amounted to $250 million in sectors: Agriculture, industry, services, construction, communications and information technology.
On 13th August 2018, the Egyptian President Abd el Fattah el- Sisi received Yemeni President Mansour Hadi on his visit to Egypt.
The Co-Chairs both witnessed the signing ceremony of a memorandum of understanding between the Egyptian Central Bank and its Yemeni counterpart on cooperation in the banking sector, especially in the fields of skills exchange and training of workers in this sector.
The volume of trade exchange between the two countries during the period January -May 2018 amounted to $318.8 million, the trade balance in this economic relationship came in favor of Egypt as the Egyptian exports to Yemen exceeded its imports from it with a value that exceeds $ 229.7 million. Egypt’s exported to Yemeni dozens of goods and products of which imports amounted to about $89 million.
Egypt is considered one of the most important markets to Yemeni export destination. As its ranks become the second after Saudi Arabia. According to the statistical data ,the most important Yemeni imports from Egypt’s goods and products represented in clothes; electric appliances; food stuffs; perfumes; medicine and others. While Egypt’s imports from Yemen are agricultural goods as: wheat; maize, as well as fertilizers; coffee and tea.
The Non- Petroleum Egyptian exports increased by 2.3%during the first ten months of 2019 to record $21.322 billion compared to$ 20.835 billion during the same period of 2018.
President of the General Export and Import Control Board, Ismail Jaber said that there are four exports sectors that had achieved tangible growth included exports of food industry ,As it registered $2.877 billion, compared to $2.597 billion over the same period in 2018 with an increase of 11%.
Also, agricultural exports recorded $1.994 billion compared to $1.926 billion during the same period from 2018 with an increase of 9%.
Garment sectors is about $1.408billion compared to $1.309 billion during the same period of 2018 with an increase of 8%.
Engineering industry about $2.052 compared to $2 billion with an increase of 3% over the same period last year.
In 2018, Egyptian total volume exports to Yemen amounted to $278.5 billion
In 2019, Egyptian total volume exports to Yemen amounted to $ 383.4 billion
During the period January-May 2020 Egyptian total volume exports to Yemen amounted to $113.4 billion.
During the first three months of 2020, Ceramic exports to the Republic of Yemen declined to reach $4.7 million compared to $5.2 million during the same period in 2019 with a 10% decline.
The number of Yemeni people that live in Egypt about 1 million person.
Many Yemeni people Prefer to invest in Egypt's real estate market as it being one of Egypt's most prominent investment sectors in Egypt. Information indicates that Yemenis lives in Egypt own 250,000 apartments and real estate units, including 40,000 apartments with amounts ranging from $ 50,000 to $ 100,000, at an amount Up to $ 3 billion.
Yemeni total investment in Egypt amounted to $12 billion
Yemeni people who live in Egypt also were in favor of investing in luxurious restaurants, companies and productive factories, especially in food stuffs.
The Yemeni investment in Egypt witnessed significant growth over the the period 2015-2019, this included various sectors as: food and beverage industries; the plastic industry and the real estate sector, and have recently extended investment in petroleum and drilling sectors. Some Yemeni companies have become major companies in Egypt and in the Middle East as well, especially companies manufacturing glassware, manufacturing ghee, soap, aluminum, and a large manufacturer of cardboard manufacturers and apparel factories.
Yemeni family has arrived to Egypt from half 2018-half 2019 .Their investments reached $ 250 million at various sector as: real estate and education.
As for investment in Yemen all the reports that have issued from concerned Yemeni said that Egypt has a wide range of chances to invest at Yemen especially in medicine industry; fish; shoes industry ,those are sectors that are in more need to Egyptian investments.
Also, those reports have assured that the future of Egyptian –Yemeni investments in Egypt will become better during the coming period especially under the current efforts that have been exerted by both countries.
Observing geographical; strategic location of the two countries we one finds that both countries’goverened the north and south ports of the Red Sea. As such they both own the key to international commercial road that leads to 65% from international energy resource.
Developing and extending Egyptian –Yemeni relation especially on the economical level will be for the interest of both countries this according to the reports that have been issued from concerned Yemeni economic ministries.
During the coming period, Yemen is keen to attract more Egyptian investments and to orient their investments towards various sectors as: pharmaceuticals, fish, textile industry, and others, such as tourism and hotels. This can be achieved by activating the role of the Joint Higher Committee for Economic and Technical Cooperation between the two countries to make use of the different potential of every country.
On 6 / 2 / 2020, a private plane carrying 32 Egyptian fishermen who had been detained in Yemen since December 2019 arrived at Cairo airport.
The 32 fishermen were from Ezbet El-Borg of Damietta governorate. They have taken two fishing boats with the name “One Two" and "El Mostafa El hadi” who had approached the Red Sea. They were detained for breaching Yemeni waters .They were arrested for violating the territorial waters and hunting without permission as they have no license.
Egyptian efforts to release them and return them to Egypt have been welcomed by Ambassador Nabila Makram, Minister of Immigration.
All returning fishermen confirmed that they had received good and good treatment throughout their detention, and no one had been harmed.
On 20/7/2020 Minister of State for Migration and Expatriates Affairs Nabila Makram received Yemeni minister of expatriates, Alawi Bafaqih, to discuss cooperation between the two countries and exchange of expertise in the migration affairs file.
The Yemeni minister was visiting Egypt as part of a delegation accompanying Yemeni Prime Minister Maaen Abdel Malik to discuss with Prime minister Mostafa Madbouli bilateral cooperation.
A statement issued by the Ministry of Migration and Expatriates Affairs on 20/7/2020 said Makram praised relations between the two countries, saying the bilateral migration file has witnessed a significant progress as the two ministers discussed efforts of confronting illegal migration.
For his part, the Yemeni minister praised historical relations binding the two countries saying such bilateral meetings with Egyptian officials affirm the need of fostering cooperation in the migration file between the two countries as Egypt hosts about 1 million Yemenis.
Bafakih also has drawn attention to the Yemeni side keenness to benefit from Egypt’s experience in dealing with the second and third generation of Egyptians abroad, and to work on linking them to their motherland, which represents a fortification for them from any extremist ideas that may dominate them under the current circumstances, as well as Egypt dealings with its scholars and experts abroad through the series of conferences that ha been known as “Egypt Can”.
On 5/8/2015, Egypt dispatched a plane full of medical equipment and food stuffs as a gift for the Yemeni people. Egypt also sent a large number of doctors there to offer health care to Yemeni people. Egypt provided aid to Sana. This happened according to Egypt’s capabilities and according to the agreements and minutes that have been signed between the two countries. Among these aids:
-Providing Yemeni Education Ministry with a number of Egyptian teachers in various educational stages.
-Providing a number of experts working in government agencies with financing part of the salaries of some of them.
-Providing the Ministry of Education with quantities of textbooks and laboratories.
- Building (3) schools in Sana; Taiz and Ibb
-Building Egyptian Nasser Hospital in Ibb
- Dispatching a number of Egyptian medical missions to work in Yemeni hospitals
- A joint Egyptian-Yemeni high committee holds its session headed by the prime ministers of the two countries Egypt and Sanaa alternate lively. As such, a number of agreements; protocols and memorandums of understanding have been signed.
-Anew headquarters of the Office of the Medical Adviser has been inaugurated at the Egyptian Embassy in Sana'a at the expense of the Egyptian Government, with high-level cadres, aimed at providing best treatment services, medical counselling to all siblings in Yemen who wish to be treated at Egypt, as well as exchanging experiences, training convoys and facilitating communication between universities in both countries.
On 5/4/2018, Egypt has sent the first shipment of Egyptian humanitarian aid that has been in favor of the brotherly Yemeni people. It has been sent on two consignments of 10 tons of medicines, vaccines and medical supplies.
It has been sent in solidarity with the brotherly Yemeni people, and in implementation of the directives of the Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
On 26/7/2020, as of the directives of President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, Lieutenant General Mohamed Zaki, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces and Minister of Defense and Military Production, ordered the specialized departments to prepare and supply an aid of shipment of medical supplies and disinfectants, to stand by the brotherly Yemeni people in their trouble and confront the spread of a virus Corona and other epidemics spreading in Yemen, where the aid has been transported via a military transport plane to be delivered to the legitimate Yemeni government through the King Salman Relief and Humanitarian Aid Center in Raya.
Cultural and educational relations are a fundamental pillar of the relations
between the two countries.Educational cooperation between Egypt and Yemen
has grown in recent years, and there are more than 1,300 students from Yemen
studying in various branches in Egyptian universities, in addition to about fifty
thousand Yemeni visitors who come to Egypt for tourism and medical treatment
According to the educational cooperation agreement between the
two countries, Yemen offers 20 university scholarships exempt from
fees annually to Egyptian students, while Egypt offers 40 university
scholarships in addition to 25 scholarships in the field of postgraduate
studies free of charge, exchange of experiences and organizing
training courses for workers in higher education institutions as well.
An agreement of cooperation was signed between Egypt and Yemen
effective from 2003 to 2005. By virtue of the agreement, Egypt provided
3 scholarships annually to Yemeni students to obtain B.Sc., M.A. and Ph.D.
degrees from the Academy of Arts in Cairo. Yemenis would be allowed to
study archaeology, music, plastic arts, and cinema and theater.
Yemen would in turn receive Egyptian experts in archaeology and librarianship.
In October 2009 Egypt participated in Sanaa International Book Fair
with 250 publishing Houses. (Half the participating role).
In March 2010 The ministry of Culture participated in the International
Sanaa Art Forum with more than 30 artistic works for Egyptian artists.
In 20004, Menoufia University hosted 143 Arab students from universities,
including the Yemeni ones, to receive training in the faculties and institutes
of the university and some laboratories, factories and industrial institutions
in Menoufia Governorate in accounting, computer, agriculture, engineering,
science and home economics.
During the past years, A number of cooperation agreements have been
signed between the Egyptian and the Yemeni universities.
Among them are: The cultural and scientific cooperation agreement
between the universities of Minya and Sana; the agreement between
the universities of Ibb and the Suez Canal to enhance cooperation
between them, especially in dentistry field; and the Scientific
and Cultural cooperation agreement between the universities of Taiz
and the Suez Canal University to develop cooperation between them and
provide scholarships to Taiz University, in addition to the executive program
for cultural cooperation between Yemen and Egypt that are specialized in
organizing cultural relationship between the two countries
On 15/7/2018 Dr Tarek Shawky, minister of Education and technical
education agreed upon renewing the decree treating Yemeni students as equal as
Egyptians enjoying all facilities for the academic year 2018/2019.
This comes within the framework of Egypt's support to Yemeni brothers
in their crisis and the ministry's role in supporting the Arab brothers.
The Education Ministry have agreed to treat Yemeni students the same
treatment as Egyptian students, and these approvals have been renewed
annually, the last of which was at 2017/2018 academic year.
On 11/4/2017, Egypt and Yemen signed a memorandum of understanding
to promote cooperation in various fields, on educational, scientific,
cultural, research, training and exchange of experience.
President of Assiut University, Dr, Ahmed Abdo said that this comes within
the context of the university's keenness to achieve fruitful cooperation
with all Arab and foreign universities and to promote actual contact
and partnership through exchanging successful experience on the research and
educational scales for development.
Dr. Tarek El Gamal ,deputy of Assiut university for graduate studies and
research ,declared that the memo includes providing MA an PH.D scholarships
and facilitating registration for Taaz university students and to treat them
as equal as Egyptian students and encouraging the exchange of visits of
professors and students' delegations for training purposes on various
domains. The term of this agreement is three years.
Every year Egypt receives 4 Yemeni trainees in the field of Theatre, cinema
and arts for a four week training course in addition to exchanging artistic
bands of 150 member on yearly bases to demonstrate their artistic shows for
Educational cooperation between Egypt and Yemen witnessed increasing growth in recent years after the signing of an educational agreement.
Dr,. Tarek Shawky,minister of Education and technical education agreed upon renewing the decree treating Yemeni students as equal as Egyptians enjoying all facilities for the academic year 2018/2019.This comes within the framework of Egypt's support to Yemeni brothers in their crisis and the ministry's role in supporting the Arab brothers.
Egypt and Yemen signed a memorandum of understanding to promote cooperation in various fields , on educational,scientific,cultural ,research,training and exchange of experience. President of Assiut university,Dr, Ahmed Abdo said that this comes within the context of the university's keenness to achieve fruitful cooperation with all Arab and foreign universities and to promote actual contact and partnership through exchanging successful experience on the research and educational scales for development.
Dr. Tarek El Gamal ,deputy of Assiut university for graduate studies and research ,declared that the memo includes providing MA an PH.D scholarships and facilitating registration for Taaz university students and to treat them as equal as Egyptian students and encouraging the exchange of visits of professors and students' delegations for training purposes on various domains. The term of this agreement is three years.
An educational agreement has been signed between Egypt and Yemen by virtue of which Yemeni educationalists are offered free-of-charge scholarships in Egypt and the other way round.
The agreement also covers training courses and the exchange of expertise between workers in higher education institutions.