President Sisi (L) meets with King Salman (R) in Riyadh in April- Press photo
CAIRO - 2 July 2017: Saudi Ambassador in Cairo Ahmed Qattan has denied media reports claiming that King Salman Bin Abdulaziz would raise the Saudi flag on the two disputed islands of Tiran and Sanafir, which Egypt handed down to Saudi Arabia.
In a statement from the Saudi embassy on Sunday, Qattan called on all media outlets to be accurate in their coverage and to ensure the credibility of the news piece.
Three days ago, anonymous sources told DPA that King Salmam would raise the Saudi flag on the two islands, which were subject to Egyptian sovereignty before a maritime demarcation deal between Cairo and Riyadh was signed in April 2016.
The sources added that King Salman would make a 12-day visit to Tabuk Region in northwestern Saudi Arabia, where he would lay a foundation stone to Egypt-Saudi Arabia Causeway (dubbed in media as King Salman Bridge). The causeway will be built to link Saudi Arabia’s Tabuk to Egypt’s South Sinai for transportation, with a cost of $4-5 billion over five to seven years.
The sources also indicated that President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi would attend the inauguration ceremony.
On June 24, President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi ratified a border demarcation agreement with Saudi Arabia. The approval of the accord came after being passed by Parliament, the Cabinet announced in a statement.
The deal was opposed by many activists and lawyers who sued the government to stop it; the High Constitutional Court, is still considering the case. The two islands are located in the entrance of the gulf of Aqaba in the Red Sea.