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Sisi: 'No doubt' Trump will make a strong leader

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi met with Donald Trump on September 19, 2016 [Getty]

Date of publication: 22 September, 2016

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Egypt's leader on Wednesday praised Donald Trump's abilities as a possible president while cautiously avoiding an endorsement of Hillary Clinton's presidential potential.
Egypt's President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi said Wednesday that he has "no doubt" that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump would make a strong leader of the United States.

The Egyptian leader praised the business tycoon in an interview with CNN, where he was asked about Trump's controversial proposal of banning Muslims from entering the US if he becomes president.

"The United States in general conducts very strict security measures for everyone who wishes to visit it, which has been in place for quite a few years," Sisi explained, adding that the Republican nominee will likely soften his tone towards Muslims if he is elected.

"It's also important to know that during election campaigns many statements are made and many things are said, however afterwards governing the country would be something different. And will be subject to many factors," he continued.

When asked whether Hillary Clinton would make a good president, Sisi gingerly responed that, "Political parties in the United States would not allow candidates to reach that level unless they are qualified to lead a country the size of the United States of America".

Egypt's military strongman met with both Trump and Clinton on his visit to the United Nations in New York this week.

While Clinton is reported to have "emphasised the importance of respect for rule of law and human rights to Egypt's future progress" in her meeting with Sisi, Trump paved the way for cordial relations between the himself and the former army chief.

According to a statement released by Trump's presidential campaign on Monday, the Rebuplican "thanked President al-Sisi and the Egyptian people for what they have done in defence of their country and for the betterment of the world over the last few years". 

These contrasting attitudes towards Egypt's president, who has led a crushing campaign against political dissent and civil liberties in his country, has raised concerns among human rights advocates internationally.

Rights advocates fear that a Trump presidency will bolster US support for Egypt's leader, who rose to power after toppling the country's first democratically-elected president in 2013.

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