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Interview by Minister Hoxhaj given to the newspaper El-Ahram

Cairo , 22 May – In an interview for one of the largest and most influential newspapers in Egypt and the Arab world, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kosovo, Enver Hoxhaj talked about the historic relations between the Albanian people and Egypt and the need for diplomatic relations between the two states.

In the interview, Minister Hoxhaj said that the people of Kosovo are closely linked to the history of the people of Egypt.

“The founder of the modern state of Egypt, Muhamed Ali Pasha Mesuud bin Aga, was of Albanian origin, and spoke the language used by the overwhelming majority of the people of Kosovo, and there are also many Kosovars who studied in Egypt in the last century”, said Hoxhaj.

He told the newspaper that Kosovo expects great support from Egypt’s people, bearing in mind their historic links and shared faith.

“After the revolution, we will work to open up new political, diplomatic, cultural and economic channels with Egypt. We hope that we will achieve full relations between Kosovo – the newest state in the world -and Egypt the oldest state in the world”.

When asked how Egypt would benefit by recognizing Kosovo’s statehood, Minister Hoxhaj argued that diplomatic relations are not only an issue of benefit, but a question of justice and principle.

“It would be natural for Egypt to be one of the countries which recognized the statehood, suffering and pain of my people. Kosovo’s fate is a sui-generis case”, added Hoxhaj.

He also talked about the demonstrations of millions of Egyptians for freedom, calling it a great victory for peace and democracy in the world.

“We followed the Egyptian revolution and we were happy that the bloodletting was ended. The path toward democracy is now very close for your country. Egypt will have an important role for long-term stability and peace in the Balkans”.

In the interview, Kosovo’s leading diplomat explained how international intervention in Kosovo had helped to prevent paramilitary violence and the expulsion of thousands of Albanians from Kosovo.

“Kosovo is the best example, the clearest symbol and a unique case in the world and it is the best experience showing that the international community’s intervention prevented one of the greatest humanitarian disasters since the Second World War. Kosovo does not have oil. Its wealth is in its young people who constitute the majority of the population. And someone wanted to kill them, and to damage them, thus NATO’s intervention was inevitable.  Kosovo is a success story not just for the United Nations but for the entire world. In addition, it is a story about securing peace and establishing a democratic system”, said Hoxhaj.

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