Challenging ideas
On Turkish politics and International affairs

Insight Turkey > Articles |

Re-evaluating Iran-Egypt Relations: A Look at the Evolving Geopolitical Context

Egypt under President Abdel Fatteh el-Sisi appears committed to avoid falling into the contentious Sunni-Shia divide by reconfiguring its security considerations based on the recognition of new circumstances that prioritize stability above sectarian and ethnic identity concerns. While Egypt is unlikely to fundamentally alter its foreign policy anytime soon, largely due to its economic dependency on rich Arab countries of the Persian Gulf, its recalibration of relations with Iran has assumed a new level of importance. The growing threat of violent extremism to destabilize the regional order and state-system is undermining old political alliances. This paper provides a systematic attempt to examine the prospects of Egypt’s foreign policy changes and their regional implications, particularly for its economic dependency on Saudi Arabia.

Re-evaluating Iran-Egypt Relations A Look at the Evolving Geopolitical Context
Then Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad meets with his Egyptian counterpart Mohamed Morsi on the sidelines of the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Tehran on August 30, 2012. AFP PHOTO / HAMID FOROUTAN

Introduction

The Arab spring, which initially obscured the prominence of religious and ethnic cleavages, has continually underscored sectarian tensions in a region already overrun with many political difficulties. The post-Arab Spring political dynamic, in various countries and contexts, has seen an unprecedented increase in sectarian tensions in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Evolving sectarian tensions and identity politics in the MENA region have given rise to renewed threat and opportunity perceptions, prompting a shifting geopolitical context and the configuration of new security considerations.1 Iran-Egypt relations have thus far managed to escape these sectarian tensions, as Egyptian leaders in the post-Arab uprisings have prioritized the region’s stability over entangling Egypt in proxy wars that often signify broader political rivalries in the MENA region. 

Already have an account? Sign In.
Print Subscription
4 Print Issues
Subscribe
Digital Subscription
4 Digital Issues
Subscribe
Premium Subscription
4 Print Issues
4 Digital Issues
Subscribe

Labels »  

Call for Paper: European Union Crisis