Younes Makhyoun, head of the Salafi Al-Nour party, attended meetings with the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Education. The party suggested a plan to help resolve immigration problems for Egyptians in Libya.
Nader Bakkar, official spokesperson for Al-Nour, reported that Makhyoun met with Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohamed Kamel Amr on Monday to discuss Egypt’s foreign policy. Bakkar said that his party had requested the meeting for a number of reasons.
“Firstly we are concerned about the current dilemma between Egypt and Libya regarding visa problems,” Bakkar said. He confirmed that Al-Nour was concerned with the Libyan authorities’ management of the situation. Bakkar highlighted that this was a new attitude on the part of Libyan authorities. “We want to contribute to solving the problem, we have a strong relationship with people in Matruh and in Libya itself,” he added.
On this note, Bakkar reported that Al-Nour “suggested a transition period of three months before a new system can be put in place”. The spokesperson said that the Libyan side has initially accepted this plan and that Al-Nour will be “continuing our efforts with the Libyan ambassador”.
During his meeting with Kamel Amr, Makhyoun discussed foreign policy, Bakkar reported. “We are not in favour of the foreign policy of the current regime especially regarding the Gulf area and the Iranian regime,” he continued.
On relations with the Gulf, Bakkar said that Al-Nour is “concerned that relations are weakening with the Gulf, and we cannot afford and will not allow this to happen”. Bakkar was critical of Egyptian involvement in the case of Muslim Brotherhood members on trial in the United Arab Emirates.
“As a party we want the regime to be based on an ideology or unique way of thinking which will include all Egyptians,” he said.
Al-Nour did not react positively to the recent visit of Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmedinejad, saying in a statement that Iran is responsible for massacres of Sunni Muslims and is attempting to spread Shi’ism to Egypt and the Gulf states.
Makhyoun met with Minister of Education Ibrahim Ghoneim on Sunday to discuss the future of the Egyptian education system. The meeting, according to a statement released by the Ministry of Education, was part of an initiative to “exchange insights and ideas”.
Bakkar reported that Ghoneim had presented the “ministry’s strategy for the next three years for educational development”. The ministry statement said that Makhyoun expressed his party’s appreciation for the ministry’s efforts “and added that we strive for an education system that deals with the components of the Egyptian people and is aligned with the aspirations of the Egyptian people after the 25 January revolution”.
Bakkar reported the ministry was “keen to know the point of view of Al-Nour”. He said that Makhyoun “set some broad lines but did not provide a detailed point of view”. He added that “our point of view of the whole cabinet is a negative one so we do not want a strategic partnership with this cabinet; it will be restructured very soon”.
Al-Nour recently distanced itself from the presidency and the Freedom and Justice Party. The Salafi party was angered when one of its members was fired from his role as an advisor to President Mohamed Morsi. Makhyoun consequently demanded an apology. The head of the party announced in January that Al-Nour “will ally with parties of Islamic persuasion, but not the FJP”.
In January Al-Nour also held meetings with Egypt’s largest opposition bloc, the National Salvation Front. After these meetings, both sides announced a unified vision for resolving the current political crisis in Egypt.