The United States has announced that Egypt has signed a bilateral communications agreement (CISMOA) that protect and regulate the use of sensitive American avionics and communications systems.
On 21 March the Embassy of Egypt in Washington quoted US Central Command General Joseph Votel as saying that “in January 2018, we celebrated the successful signing of the bilateral Communications Interoperability and Security Memorandum of Agreement (CISMOA), crowning over thirty years of effort to enhance security and counterterrorism cooperation.”
The Embassy of Egypt in Washington also quoted US Central Command General Joseph Votel saying that “Egypt remains an anchor of U.S. interests in the region” and he mentioned that “President (Donald Trump) asked the Congress to provide $1.3 billion as military aid for Egypt in 2018.”
Gen.Votel also added,”Egypt supports our overflight requests, ensures Suez Canal transit, and shares our commitment to defeat ISIS. The cornerstone of this relationship is our security assistance partnership.”
” Egypt is an essential partner in countering the flow of foreign fighters, material, and financial support to extremists transiting from Libya through Egypt into the Central Region, “he added.
CISMOA covers the supply of encrypted communications equipment and systems, allowing secure peacetime and wartime communication between the two militaries and their assets.
The controversial agreement was signed last January, but, neither the presidential institution nor the Egyptian Armed Forces announce it to the Egyptian public as it was previously rejected by consecutive regimes in Egypt throughout the past 30 years.
It is worth to mention that many countries, such as India, have been reluctant to sign up to CISMOA as US communications and encryption equipment is only accessible for maintenance or repair to US personnel.
Egypt would be obliged to let the US military access its facilities and communications equipment – these concerns have delayed the CISMOA agreement.
The agreement would allow Egypt to obtain weapons and missiles that were banned before to the North African country. It will also link Egypt and Washington communication system altogether.
Moreover, in case of military aggression against Egypt, US will defend the Egyptian territory militarily. In return, in case of war, US would ask Egypt for military support, ammunition, and the use of Egypt’s military bases for US operation.
In this case, according to the agreement, Egypt’s military forces will be under the power of US Central Command(CENTCOM).