Egypt's president-elect to sue Iranian news agency

CAIRO Wed Jun 27, 2012 1:48pm EDT

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CAIRO (Reuters) - The office of Egyptian president-elect Mohamed Mursi will file a lawsuit against the Iranian news agency Fars for making up an interview with him which said he promised to improve ties between the two countries, Mursi's spokesman said on Wednesday.

"President Mursi was never interviewed by Iran's Fars news agency. The interview was fabricated and his presidential office has begun taking legal action against the news agency," Yasser Ali told Reuters.

Iran has hailed Mursi's victory over former air force commander Ahmed Shafik in Egypt's first free presidential election as a "splendid vision of democracy" that marked the country's "Islamic Awakening".

Since Egypt's Hosni Mubarak was toppled in one of those uprisings, both Cairo and Tehran have signaled interest in renewing ties severed more than 30 years ago.

Mursi, however, is striving to reassure Egypt's Western allies wary at the prospect of Islamist rule, and Gulf states that are deeply suspicious of Iranian influence, and is unlikely to stage major foreign policy reversals so soon after taking office.

(Writing by Marwa Awad; Editing by Michael Roddy)

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