It looks like Trump and Sisi's friendship is off to a glowing start.
In one of his first phone calls as President of the United States, Donald Trump called up Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Monday to discuss a future White House visit and fighting terrorism.
Sisi told Trump that he hopes bilateral ties between the two countries will see a "new push" under Trump's administration. Trump reiterated his praise for Egypt's efforts to address extremism and commended Sisi's efforts to address the country's economic woes. He also offered to discuss ways the U.S. could support Egypt economically.
Trump previously promised to be a "loyal friend" to Sisi
The two leaders met in New York in September on the sidelines of the United Nations Summit for Refugees and Migrants. At the time, Trump was just a presidential candidate but it was clear who Sisi was rooting for.
After the meeting, Sisi said there was "no doubt" that Trump would make a strong leader, but had little to say about Trump's political opponent, Hillary Clinton. Trump also had glowing praise for Egypt's president, promising to be "a loyal friend, not simply an ally."
Sisi has already bowed to Trump's lead on regional issues
In December, Egypt was set to put forward a UN Security Council resolution condemning the Israeli government over illegal settlement expansion. But, after a call from Trump to Sisi, Egypt withdrew the resolution.
An Egyptian spokesman explained that Trump pushed Sisi to give his new administration "the full chance to deal with all dimensions of the Palestinian case."
The resolution moved forward anyway, put forward by Senegal, New Zealand, Malaysia and Venezuela. The Security Council voted 14-0 in favor of the resolution, with the United States – still under Barack Obama's administration – notably refraining from using its veto and abstaining from casting a vote.
Sisi doesn't appear concerned about Trump's Islamophobic rhetoric
In an interview with CNN following his September meeting with Trump, Sisi said that the U.S. "in general conducts very strict security measures for everyone who wishes to visit it, which has been in place for quite a few years," referring to Trump's calls for a ban on Muslims entering the country.
Sisi also said "during election campaigns many statements are made and many things are said," appearing to brush aside Trump's inflammatory comments against Muslims. He suggested that things would change once Trump became president.
Whether or not Trump's rhetoric changes remains to be seen. In the meantime, it looks like a fast friendship has formed between the strongman leaders of Egypt and America.