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Sisi, slurs and diplomatic stirs: How the G20 summit went down

Sisi's hand was left unshaken, Obama was called a rude word and Putin didn't get the attention he wanted. The G20 in full colour
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi arrives in China for the G20 summit (Reuters)

It was meant to be a G20 summit held under the theme of international cooperation. Instead, diplomatic snubs dominated the agenda - including Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte's rather "colourful" description of his US counterpart Barack Obama.

The meeting in Hangzhou, China will also be remembered - in Egypt at least - for apparent snubs against Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. The Egyptian president was ignored by his Russian and Turkish counterparts as they shook the hands of others around them.

And, in footage from another part of the meeting, Obama apparently flat out refused a handshake.

Another video showed Sisi's heavies asking US Secretary of State John Kerry if he had a 'mobile phone with a camera' before a meeting with Egypt's president. Kerry's response summed up the question.

Social media was rife with discussion on Obama's apparent lack of interest in a conversation with Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Egyptian state media however, had a different interpretation. Prominent pro-Sisi reporter Ahmed Mousa dismissed the images and described Erdogan pandering to Putin, describing him as ‘Putin’s servant’.

Obama’s clear effort in trying to improve relations with the Turkish president did not go amiss either, as a video of him making his way around the meeting table in an attempt to shake Erdogan’s hand. 

And Obama himself appeared to be snubbed by the hosts - Chinese authorities failed to provide a staircase to allow him to leave his plane, forcing him to use another exit, while rolling out the red carpet for other leaders. 

Egyptian state media was quick to jump on the apparent slight. Mousa, who recently deactivated his twitter account after his poll on whether people would vote for Sisi backfired, described the reception as "humiliating" and said Obama was forced to use the “servants’ steps”.

Small victories.

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