During Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s first U.S. visit since taking power in 2014, U.S. President Donald Trump offered heaping praise and help in fighting terrorists. “I just want to let everybody know in case there was any doubt that we are very much behind President Sisi. He’s done a fantastic job in a very difficult situation. We are very much behind Egypt and the people of Egypt,” Trump said Monday after meeting with Sisi in the Oval Office. Trump’s warm embrace marked a major turnaround from former President Barack Obama, who froze aid to Egypt after Sisi overthrew then-President Mohamed Morsi in 2013. “I just want to say to you, Mr. President, that you have a great friend and ally in the United States, and in me,” Trump told Sisi. Trump made no mention of Egypt’s human-rights record under Sisi, though White House press secretary Sean Spicer said after the meeting the two had discussed “both areas of cooperation and of concern.” Human-rights groups have repeatedly sounded the alarm over 40,000 political prisoners in custody under Sisi’s government.
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