“Addressing the opening session of an Arab economic summit in Saudi Arabia, Mohammed Morsi also declared his support for Algeria against threats to its security — a reference to the takeover by Islamic militants of a gas complex last week in that nation’s remote southeast. …
The Masked Brigade, the group that claims to have masterminded the takeover, has warned of more such attacks against any country backing France’s involvement in Mali. French forces there are trying to help stop an advance by Islamic extremists.
Morsi, who hails from Egypt’s oldest Islamist group — the Muslim Brotherhood — said he would have preferred to see a “peaceful and developmental” intervention in Mali. There was no immediate reaction from France on the comments Morsi made in Riyadh. Morsi is expected to visit Paris on Feb. 1.
Speaking at the opening of an Arab development conference in Saudi Arabia, Egypt’s President Mohamed Mursi said development was needed to solve the conflict in the impoverished country.
“I would like to confirm that we do not agree, ever, to military intervention in Mali because this would inflame the conflict in this region,” Mursi said.
“The intervention must be peaceful and developmental and funds must be spent on development,” he said. “What we don’t ever want is to … separate the Arab north from the core of Africa.”