Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi granted an exclusive interview to FRANCE 24 ahead of his meeting in Paris with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron. Sisi, who is on a three-day visit to France, discussed the fight against terrorism and the need to secure borders, the human rights situation in his country – which is criticised by several NGOs – as well as the political situation in neighbouring Libya.
"There are countries who are supporting terrorism through financing, weapons and moral support, media support and political support", Sisi told FRANCE 24’s Michel Kik, in a thinly veiled reference to Qatar - although he refused to "name specific countries". "Those countries have to stop this, not just for the stability of Egypt but for the whole word", the Egyptian leader said.
Regarding the human rights situation in Egypt, Sisi was categorical: "There are no political prisoners in Egypt; there are normal trial proceedings that are fair".
But several NGOs, such as Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the International Federation for Human Rights and Reporters Without Borders, say that Egypt is experiencing its “"worst human rights crisis in decades".