Hebrew, Arabic Media Attribute Improved Egypt-Israel Ties to President Sisi, Common Regional Interests
Egypt has increased normalization with Israel in the last couple of years, Qatar-based Al Jazeera reported on Wednesday.
Quoting Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot, Al Jazeera said Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi was responsible for the improved relations, attributing his friendly policies to the confluence of Cairo’s and Jerusalem’s interests where Hamas, ISIS and the Iranian threat are concerned.
The article claimed that Sisi is in constant contact with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and that he offered to improve bilateral relations in exchange for a “political gesture” on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, not a full solution. It further asserted that Sisi recently praised Netanyahu, and called for the expansion of Egyptian-Israeli peace to include other Arab countries.
The report also said that Sisi’s leadership has seen unprecedented political and cultural exchanges between Egyptians and Israelis, including a book fair carrying Hebrew publications.
However, as The Algemeiner reported, the head of the international book fair held in Cairo last month forbade paying royalties to Israeli authors whose works were translated and sold at the expo. “They stole our land; we’ll steal their intellectual property rights,” he said, referring to Israel’s 1967 capture of the Sinai Peninsula, which the Jewish state agreed to return in its 1979 peace treaty with Cairo.
In addition, on Wednesday, Egyptian Member of Parliament Tawfik Okasha was voted out of the legislative body by two-thirds of his colleagues because he held a meeting last week with Israeli Ambassador Haim Koren.