Saudi Tells Egypt Delegation Relations 'Solid'
Saudi Arabia has assured a high ranking Egyptian delegation visiting the kingdom following Riyadh's closure of its Cairo embassy over protests that relations remain "solid", the SPA state news agency said.
Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal also told the delegation that Riyadh does not rule out that "foreign elements" could have plotted to cause the tension between the two Arab heavyweights, SPA reported late on Thursday.
"We do not rule out that foreign elements not wanting the good for us, or Egypt, or the whole nation, could be behind disturbing the historic, solid and growing relations between our two countries and peoples," he told the visitors.
"We believe that the wise people on both sides are capable of overcoming minor issues and realizing the great common factors that encourage us to aim for more cooperation and alliance... and for a return of the high-level and sophisticated relations," Faisal said.
"Those who aim to insult any of our two countries will be faced firmly. Your presence among us today is a clear proof of that," he added.
Faisal welcomed the visit by the delegation headed by parliament speaker Saad al-Katatni and the head of the consultative council Ahmed Fahmi as an "appreciated gesture."
Riyadh on Saturday recalled its ambassador from Cairo after angry protests outside the Saudi embassy in Cairo over the arrest of an Egyptian human rights lawyer in the Gulf kingdom which claimed that he was in possession of drugs.
The embassy as well as the kingdom's consulates in the Mediterranean cities of Alexandria and Suez were closed.
Katatni stressed at the meeting that a "passing incident cannot disturb the relations" between the two countries.
"Egypt after the revolution needs the support of its brothers," he said.
Egypt's military council, which is ruling the country since former President Hosni Mubarak stepped down in February last year following nationwide protests, said on Thursday that the Saudi envoy will return to Cairo.