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Abdul-Fattah El Sisi Sworn in as President

Abdul-Fattah El Sisi was sworn in as the Egyptian President on June 8, 2014. Attendees included top Egyptian officials as well as leaders and dignitaries from Arab, African, and Western allies. Among the attendees was Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister Tedros Adhanom. Relations between the two countries has been strained as of late due to a controversial hydroelectric dam that is being built in Ethiopia, which Egypt fears could affect its major source of potable water. However, Sisi stated today that he “won’t allow the Renaissance Dam to cause a crisis or problem with sisterly Ethiopia.”

In an address to the Supreme Constitutional Court’s General Assembly Sisi proclaimed that “for the first time, the President-elect shakes hands with the outgoing President, and together they sign a power transfer document in an unprecedented occasion.”

The White House indicated last week that it hopes to “advance [Washington and Cairo’s] strategic partnership and the many interests shared by the United States and Egypt.” Concerning the elections, the White House stated that it was “pleased that international organizations were allowed to participate as observers” but is concerned “about the restrictive political environment in which this election took place.”

Sisi faces substantial challenges as president, including a failing economy and political unrest. In his speech, Sisi invited the heads of state present to attend a donor conference to “contribute in building a new Egypt.”