"The message is clear to Israel: Passport to the region is to give up policy of intransigence, threatening, settlements and occupation and [allow for] the establishment of the sovereign Palestinian state," said presidential candidate and longtime Egyptian diplomat Amr Moussa on his official Twitter account Thursday.
The former foreign minister and secretary general of the Arab League announced his intention to run for Egypt's presidency in February 2011, days after Hosni Mubarak was ousted by the 25 January popular uprising.
During his tenure as foreign minister from 1991 to 2001, under Mubarak, Moussa's scathing criticism of Israel made him a popular figure on the Egyptian street.
Moussa also served as secretary general of the Arab League between 2001 and 2011, but was subject to constant criticism for the League's passive role in many conflicts in the region, including Israel's attack on the Gaza Strip from December 2008 to January 2009.
Moussa submitted his official candidacy application before the Higher Presidential Elections Commission (HPEC), becoming the first presidential hopeful to officially file the necessary papers. For candidates to be elligble to run they are required to gather 30,000 recommendations from among the people across at least 15 governorates in Egypt, or the endorsement of 30 MPs, or the support of a political party with at least one member in parliament.
Presidential elections will take place 23-24 May, with the president named 21 June after a runoff voting round 16-17 June, if necessary.