Skip to main content

Will Riyadh cancel aid to Egypt?

Saudi Arabia might be using the promise of aid or the threat of withdrawing aid to get Egypt to toe the line politically in regard to Syria.

CAIRO —  Saudi Arabia announced on Feb. 8 that the kingdom, along with the United Arab Emirates (UAE), was prepared to send ground troops to Syria to fight alongside the US-led international coalition. This fanned a spark of diplomatic disagreement between Cairo and Riyadh. 

Suddenly, without stating any clear justifications or setting another date, Egypt’s Prime Minister Sharif Ismail canceled his Feb. 10 visit to Saudi Arabia. The visit had been scheduled to finalize the Egyptian-Saudi Coordination Council's agreement to make 30 billion riyals ($8 billion) in investments in Egypt, as pledged by Saudi King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud in December. The agreement included filling Egypt's oil needs for five years and supporting Saudi vessel traffic in the Suez Canal. The aid package came after the countries discussed developing military cooperation and the establishment of a joint Arab force.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.