Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was in Cairo for talks Sunday with Egyptian officials as his country seeks to break diplomatic isolation and sanctions by the West over its invasion of Ukraine.
Lavrov landed in Cairo late Saturday, the first leg of his Africa trip that will also include stops in Ethiopia, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, according to Russia’s state-run RT television network.
The Russian chief diplomat met Sunday morning with President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi in a Cairo presidential palace, the Egyptian leader’s office said. Lavrov then held talks with Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shukry.
Lavrov was scheduled to meet later Sunday with the Arab League Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit. He will also address the permanent representatives of the pan-Arab organization, RT reported.
Russia’s war in Ukraine has had dire effects on the world economy, driving up oil and gas prices to unprecedented levels.
Ukraine is one of the world’s largest exporters of wheat, corn and sunflower oil, but Russia’s invasion of the country and naval blockade of its ports have halted shipments. Some Ukrainian grain is transported through Europe by rail, road and river, but with higher transportation costs.
The war has disrupted shipments of Russian products because shipping and insurance companies did not want to deal with