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Leaked recordings of Egypt’s president can be at least described as un-statesmanlike.
The Gulf States’ aid for Egypt has reached over $30 billion since 2013, according to leaked audio clip of the president of Egypt Al-Sis. This is the second leaked recording of conversations between Al-Sisi and other decision-making officials in Egypt this week.
In the recording, a conversation takes place between manager brigadier of Al-Sisi’s office Abbas Kamil, Assistant Chief of Staff Brigadier Ahmad Abdulhalim and former military spokesman Ahmad Ali.
They discuss the Gulf States’ financial aid for Egypt. Kamil estimated the total to reach $30 billion, from which over $14 billion worth of oil and other goods. The Egyptian government declared $3 billion in its budget and about $6 billion in petrol aid donated by Gulf States, according to the former member of the budget committee in the Egyptian parliament Ashraf Bader Al-din.
The funds came following the army’s coup d’état in 2013. The main donors are Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Kuwait.
Kamil hinted to Al-Sisi not to ask for change when asking for money from Saudi Arabia. It should always be huge sums of money and not modest amounts.
Under Al-Sisi’s command, the Egyptian army seized the funds sent by Gulf States. A matter Ahmad Ali commented on asking whether the aid was intended to the army or to Egypt.
Kamil answered: “The army is Egypt.”
In the last segment of the recording, Al-Sisi and Kamil were counting the money flooded from Gulf States to Egypt and admitted that the Gulf aid exceeded $30 billion.
In previous leaked recording, voices of the current president of Egypt, Abdulfattah Al-Sisi, a minister of defence at that time, chief of the presidential staff Abbas Kamil, an army general then, and Mahmoud Hegazi, the current chief of staff of the Egyptian army.
Kamil said: “We should forget the rhetoric of nationalism and Arab Nationalism. We should deal with Gulf States on the basis of give and take, especially regarding primary political attitudes.”
“There is no bargaining. These are half-states. Give and take, let him [in reference to the Gulf] pay,” he added.
Al-Sisi said that Gulf States are “rolling in cash” while people in Egypt are “suffering”. Al-Sisi instructed Kamil to ask for “$10 billion” each from Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Kuwait.
Al-Sisi described Gulf States to have money like rice. “They [Gulf States] have money like rice,” Al-Sisi literally said. This is a cultural Arabic reference indicates that someone has abundance or too much of something.
The Egyptian Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab commented on the leaked videos that they do not affect the morale of the Egyptian people in any negative way. He also showed his despise to those sympathise with the Muslim Brotherhood or their media.