Last Update 15:53
Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Mubarak was sole architect of Israel gas deal: Ex-oil minister's defence

Sameh Fahmy's lawyers tell court that providing Israel with cut-price natural gas was the ousted president's initiative and their client was only responsible for its implementation

Ahram Online, Monday 30 Apr 2012
Sameh Fahmy
Egypt's oil minister between 1999 and 2011, Sameh Fahmy (Photo: Reuters)
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1709
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1709

The defence team of Egypt’s ex-oil minister Sameh Fahmy has told a Cairo court that Hosni Mubarak was the sole architect of the deal providing cut-price gas exports to Israel, reports the state-owned Al-Ahram newspaper.

Fahmy, who served as the ousted president's oil minister from 1999 to 2011, is standing trial alongside six other officials on charges of squandering public funds related to the sale of natural gas to Israel. 
 
Fahmy's lawyers told Cairo's criminal court on Sunday that the deal was Mubarak's initiative and there is no evidence proving their client's direct connection.
 
Egypt agreed to provide Israel with natural gas in 2005, in a deal built on the two countries' landmark 1979 peace accords. The prosecution claims the agreement caused Egypt's losses of over $714 million.
 
Fahmy’s lawyers also told the court that the deal was related to state sovereignty, meaning the oil minister had no power in the decision-making process and was only responsible for its implementation.
 
The gas deal was under consideration 9 years before Fahmi was appointed minister, they said, adding that the dispute over gas prices belongs in a civil, not criminal, court.
 
Egypt last week unilaterally terminated the gas export contract with Israel. Officials cited a commercial dispute but other Egyptian commentators suggested the cancellation of the deeply unpopular deal was politically motivated.
Short link:

 

Email
 
Name
 
Comment's
Title
 
Comment
Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.
Latest

© 2010 Ahram Online.