Israel’s embassy in Cairo on Tuesday congratulated Abdel Fattah al-Sissi for securing his second term as president, winning a landslide 97 percent of the Egyptian votes.
“The Israeli embassy in Cairo congratulates President Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi for winning a second presidential term,” the embassy said on its official Facebook page in Arabic.
President Donald Trump also sent his “sincere congratulations to Sissi on his victory on Monday, according to Egypt’s state news agency MENA report, Haaretz reported.
The head of the election authority Lasheen Ibrahim said at a press conference that turnout was 41.05 percent of the almost 60 million registered voters. Sisi’s sole rival and an erstwhile ardent supporter, Moussa Mostafa Moussa, won 2.92 percent of the valid votes, Ibrahim said.
“The vote by masses of Egypt will remain a testament, no doubt, that our nation’s will imposes itself with strength and knows no weakness,” Sisi said on his Twitter account late Wednesday.
Sisi, who as army chief ousted Egypt’s first freely elected president Islamist Mohamed Morsi after mass street protests in 2013, won his first term in 2014 with 96.9 percent of valid votes.
Egypt was the first Arab country to sign a peace treaty with Israel in 1979.
Ties between the two neighbors soured after former Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi ‘s June 2012 election as president following the ouster of his predecessor Hosni Mubarak in the 2011 uprising. Morsi was ousted by then army chief Sisi in July 2013.
Later that year, the Israeli foreign ministry named Middle East specialist Haim Koren as the Jewish state’s next ambassador to Egypt.
In September Israel reopened its embassy in Cairo, five years after Israeli diplomats were forced to leave when protesters stormed the building.
Economic relations between the two countries have grown. In February this year, a historic $15 billion deal for natural gas was signed. “This will bring billions of dollars to state coffers,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said.
“The agreement will strengthen the relationships between Israel and its neighbors and increase economic cooperation between them,” Itzhak Tshuva said , the controlling shareholder of Delek Group, one of Israel’s largest energy companies.