President Trump raised his eyebrows at the G7 summit in France last month when he reportedly asked for Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi, calling him a "dictator".
"Where is my favorite dictator?" Should Trump Have Been In a room full of American and Egyptian officials, according to the Wall Street Journal.
IN HUMAN RIGHTS, EGYPT'S PRESIDENT SISI OPENS A NEW CHRISTIAN CATHEDRAL joke, it was received by "stunned silence" by officials.
Sisi took power in 2013 after the military overthrew Muslim Brotherhood-backed President Mohammed Mursi, who became Egypt's first elected president in 201
Egypt announced this week that it had arrested 16 members for allegedly smuggling currency out of the country and planning attacks in Egypt. The government has also been accused by the United States and the State Department of torturing and killing prisoners. Sisi has denied that there are political prisoners in Egypt.
VARNEY: TRUMP 'DOMINATED & # 39; THE G7 SUMMIT – AS NO OTHER PRESIDENT MADE IN YEARS & # 39;
Trump has praised Sisi in the past, giving only temporary indications of his authoritarian tendencies, including at the meeting in France.
"We got along very well. He's a very tough man, I'll tell you. But he is also a good man and did a fantastic job in Egypt. Not easy, "he said, according to the journal.
Trump, who has attached great importance to the importance of personal relationships with other leaders, has repeatedly criticized statements made by leaders of poor records of human rights.
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Critics have repeatedly attacked his friendliness towards leaders such as Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.
The Associates Press has contributed to this report.