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Are relations between Iran, Egypt warming?

The rise of the Islamic State as a common enemy threatening Muslims from all sects explains the possible rapprochement between Iran and Egypt.
People hold posters with an image of Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at the Al-Hussein mosque, named after Prophet Mohammed's grandson Hussein ibn Ali, before Ahmadinejad's visit to the mosque in old Cairo February 5, 2013. Ahmadinejad was both kissed and scolded on Tuesday when he began the first visit to Egypt by an Iranian president since Tehran's 1979 Islamic revolution. The trip was meant to underline a thaw in relations since Egyptians elected an Islamist head of state, President Mohamed Mursi, l

CAIRO — Ever since 1979, when Iran cut off ties with Egypt following President Anwar Sadat's signing of a peace treaty with Israel, each country has maintained separate strategies, nexuses and allies. However, changes in the Middle East over the past three years have forced both parties to consider new strategies to solve their long list of problems, which stand as obstacles to the development of relations between the two.

Perhaps the emergence of the Islamic State (IS) as a common enemy and a real threat to both countries has stirred the stagnant waters. Ali Akbar Velayati, former Iranian foreign minister and adviser to the supreme leader, expressed this idea during his meeting with an Egyptian media delegation in Tehran. "The Middle East without Egypt is nothing, because the vacuum left by Egypt when it is absent cannot be filled by any other state," he said. This explicit political courting of the Egyptian side sparked the curiosity of the media and political analysts alike.

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