Secy Mattis Begins Middle East Tour In Egypt, Meets With Top Officials

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Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, right, greets Bahrain’s Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, during a ceremony welcoming the visiting Bahraini crown prince at the Pentagon, Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

December 2, 2017
OAN Newsroom

Defense Secretary James Mattis visits Egypt as he kicks off his five day trip to the Middle East.

Mattis met with top Egyptian officials Saturday in Cairo, to discuss cooperation between the two countries in the fight against terrorism.

His visit came just over a week after over two dozen extremists descended on a mosque and killed more then 300 worshipers.

The pentagon said the goal of the trip is to re-affirm the enduring U.S. commitment to international partnerships.

Egypt is among one of top recipients of U.S. military assistance, receiving nearly $1.3 billion annually as well as $250 million in economic aid. The assistance is linked to Egypt’s 1979 peace treaty with Israel which is now mostly aimed at fighting terrorism.

Mattis will head to Jordan next where he is scheduled to attend a meeting on countering violent extremism, before traveling to Pakistan on Monday.

He will then wrap up his four-nation tour in Kuwait.