Turkey extends condolences to Egypt over deadly train accident

The Turkish Foreign Ministry extended condolences to Egypt over the train accident in the Qalyubia province in a statement released Sunday.

Noting that the ministry received the news with “deep sorrow,” the statement said Turkey extends condolences to the people of Egypt, as well as the families of the deceased.

At least 11 people were killed on Sunday when some train carriages derailed in Egypt’s Qalyubia province north of Cairo.

Four train wagons ran off the railway at the city of Banha in Qalyubia province, just outside Cairo, the railway authority said in a statement. Videos on social media showed wagons overturned and passengers escaping to safety along the railway.

The train was traveling to the Nile Delta city of Mansoura from the Egyptian capital.

Turkey and Egypt have been trying to fix broken ties, and Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu recently said that a delegation led by Deputy Foreign Minister Faruk Kaymakcı would travel to Egypt next month as part of the efforts.

The relations between Turkey and Egypt deteriorated after Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi toppled the country’s first democratically elected president, Mohammed Morsi, in a coup after only a year in office.

Ankara has maintained its position that a democratically elected president cannot be deposed by a military coup and thus, has voiced its criticism of el-Sissi and his backers, including the West and some of Ankara’s rivals in the Gulf region.

The Egyptian government, on the other hand, urged Turkey not to intervene in an issue that it considers as the country’s internal affairs. The dispute led to a deadlock in bilateral relations for many years.

Recently, however, signs of a possible reconciliation have come from both countries, particularly due to the changing dynamics in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Turkey-Greece crisis over the region’s energy resources.