FILE: 5-Star Movement leader Luigi Di Maio is seen during the television talk show "Porta a porta" (Door to door) in Rome, Italy January 23, 2018. REUTERS/Remo Casilli
CAIRO – 29 August 2018: Italian Deputy Prime Minster Luigi Di Maio expressed appreciation to the Italian authorities and to the cooperation of the Egyptian state to bring murderers of Italian Giulio Regeni to justice, Egypt’s Presidential spokesman Bassam Radi said.
Regeni is an Italian researcher who was killed in Cairo in 2016.
During his meeting with Di Maio on Wednesday in Cairo, President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi expressed his belief that the investigations conducted on Regeni’s murder will reach a final conclusion with Egypt’s keenness to reveal the perpetrators of the crime and bring them to justice, Radi said.
President Sisi also affirmed keenness to strengthen cooperation between the two countries in various realms, welcoming the intensification of Italian officials’ visits to Egypt, as it indicates the recovery of the bilateral relations.
Di Maio who also serves as Italy’s Economic Development Minister affirmed his country’s keenness to enhance cooperation with Egypt in various fields in the next period.
The Italian official praised the achievements Egypt has made recently in different fields. He also lauded the economic reform carried out in the country and the major projects executed with the aim of achieving economic and social progress, Radi said.
Sisi and Di Maio also discussed several international and regional issues of mutual concern, including illegal immigration across the Mediterranean Sea linking between the two states. Sisi reviewed Egypt’s efforts in combating such phenomenon, which have obviously helped reduce the movement of refugees across the Mediterranean Sea.
The two officials also discussed the cultural cooperation between the two countries especially with the inauguration of the Grand Egyptian Museum in Giza, which is considered to be the largest museum of its kind all over the world.
Di Maio met Monday with the Italian Ambassador in Rome Hisham Badr. During the meeting, Di Maio said that he has been keen to set Cairo as the first stop on his global tour as an appreciation to the leading role played by Egypt under the leadership of President Sisi in the Middle East region.
Progress in Regeni's issue
On Jan. 24, 2018, Egypt’s General Prosecution said that the letter attributed to the head of Egypt's intelligence service on the arrest of Regeni prior to his death in Egypt is a complete fraud.
An unknown person had sent the letter to the Italian Embassy in Bern, Switzerland. The General Prosecution received a letter from the Italian prosecution dated Jan. 22, 2018, containing a fabricated letter dated Jan. 30, 2016 and attributed to the head of Egypt’s intelligence service, the prosecution said in a statement.
The letter claims that Egypt’s security bodies arrested Regeni before his death in Cairo.
Rome’s prosecution demanded that Egypt’s investigation authorities take the necessary measures in order to check the authenticity of the letter in compliance with judicial cooperation between the two countries on Regeni’s murder, according to the statement.
Investigations conducted by Egypt’s prosecution revealed that the letter is forged, read the statement.
The prosecution added that it informed the Italian side about the outcome of investigations within the framework of the bilateral fruitful cooperation.
Meanwhile, the prosecution said it followed up with deep regret the reports circulated by several Italian media outlets and social media pages on the matter, noting that such reports harm judicial cooperation between Cairo and Rome.
On that score, the prosecution urged the media to check the authenticity of such news that provokes the public opinion.
Italy’s prosecutor-general paid several visits to Cairo in order to investigate the death of Regeni, alongside the Egyptian authorities.
In July 2017, Sisi assured a delegation of Italian lawmakers that his government is committed to bring those responsible for the murder of the Italian student to justice.
“President Sisi stressed the need to continue the close cooperation between investigators in the two countries,” his office said in a statement released on July 11, 2017.
“The president reiterated Egypt’s full commitment to working on disclosing the circumstances surrounding the incident so as to determine the perpetrators and bring them to justice,” the statement read.