Israel irritated by Egypt treaty remarks
Egyptian ambassador to Israel Yasser Reda
Israel's foreign ministry has responded to a statement made by Egyptian Prime Minister Essam Sharaf, saying that the Egypt-Israel Peace Treaty was not sacred, nor immune to change.
Israeli foreign minister Rafi Barak summoned Ambassador Yasser Reda to express Israel's “irritation” over repetitive calls for the modification of the peace treaty by senior Egyptian officials, AFP reported.
According to Barak, from Israel's point of view “there are no intentions whatsoever to re-open the peace treaty and the step cannot be taken unilaterally.”
His remarks follow Sharaf's Thursday statement saying that the “Camp David agreement is not a sacred thing and is always open to discussion with what would benefit the region and we could make a change if needed."
A number of Egyptian political parties have also called for changes to the peace treaty. Egypt was the first Arab country to sign a peace deal with Israel in 1979, despite Tel Aviv's previous large-scale wars against the Arab states, which had been followed by its occupation of vast expanses of the Arab territories.
The bilateral ties took another dip in August, when the Israeli military killed six Egyptian border guards close to the country's border with the Gaza Strip.
The bloodshed was followed by days of anti-Israeli rallies in front of the Israeli embassy in Cairo, leading to the deconstruction of a barricade wall near the embassy.
The Israeli ambassador to Egypt, Yitzhak Levanon, left for Israel following the recent protests, refusing to return on the grounds that the Egyptian capital was unsafe for Israelis.