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Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi answers questions during an interview, Saturday, Sept. 26, 2015, in New York. Sisi discussed various issues including Egypt's role in the Middle East, his country's work on an expansion project to the Suez Canal, and relations with the United States. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

What could disrupt Donald Trump's good relationship with Egypt? Cuts to foreign aid


WATCH | Foreign aid cuts could disrupt Trump's blossoming relationship with Egyptian President al-Sisi.

Overall, President Donald Trump and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi have been on good terms. But with a White House meeting scheduled for Monday, that relationship could be derailed by one thing. Trump’s budget calls for a 28 percent reduction in foreign aid.

But those big cuts, though not finalized, could be problematic as he tries to get foreign leaders to work with him to defeat ISIS. 

Who does he need help from? Well, leaders like al-Sisi in Egypt-- a country still in transition after the Arab Spring protests that ousted former President Hosni Mubarak that is trying to reinstate its role as a partner of peace in the region.

“Egypt has its own domestic terrorism problem," said  David Schenker of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. "Insurgents associated with ISIS. Now you have terrorist both in the Sinai Peninsula and Nile valley. “

With the two leaders meeting at the White House, it will be a delicate balance.

“I do anticipate that al-Sisi will raise that question in terms of additional money," Schenker said.

But, Egypt’s relationship with the U.S. has been rocky after President Obama temporarily suspended the delivery of military aid that the nation said it needed to fight terrorism.

“It used to be under President Mubarak that the Egyptian president would come to Washington every year. There hasn’t been an Egyptian president in Washington in seven years," Schenker told Circa.

Trump now needs to assure al-Sisi that the relationship will return to surer footing and that American money will still flow into Egyptian coffers.

“We want to maintain a good relationship with Egypt and the money is sort of the cement behind that,” Schenker concluded.

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