Egypt, Israel agree to coordinate with Palestinian authority to break stalemate in peace path

Amr Kandil , Sunday 30 May 2021

The Egyptian and Israeli foreign ministers discussed ways to urgently facilitate the reconstruction of Gaza during the upcoming period

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry (R) receives his Israeli counterpart, Gabi Ashkenazi in Cairo, 30 May 2021. Egyptian foreign minitry
Egyptian and Israeli foreign ministers, agreed on Sunday, to continue coordination between the two countries with the Palestinian national authority to seek breaking the current stalemate in the Palestinian-Israeli peace path.
Egypt’s Sameh Shoukry and Israel’s Gabi Ashkenazi met, in Cairo’s El-Tahrir Palace, a week after Israel and the Palestinian factions agreed to an Egypt-brokered ceasefire that ended 11 days of Israeli aggression.
Israel had launched airstrikes against the Gaza Strip, killing more than 250 people including dozens of women and children. Their airstrikes corresponded to rockets launched by the Palestinian factions against Israel.
Today’s meeting, between Shoukry and Ashkenazi, “comes within the framework of Egypt’s contact with the Palestinian and Israeli sides to consolidate the ceasefire between Israel and the Gaza Strip,” a statement by the Egyptian foreign ministry read.
The ministers discussed ways to urgently facilitate the reconstruction of Gaza during the upcoming period, the statement added.
Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi ordered, days before the ceasefire, the allocation of $500 million for the reconstruction of Gaza, as Israeli airstrikes reportedly wrecked hundreds of houses and displaced tens of thousands of Palestinians.
During the meeting, Shoukry affirmed the need for further measures to enhance de-escalation between the Israeli and Palestinian sides as well as to create the appropriate climate for the revival of the desired political process, the statement read.
Shoukry also highlighted the need to launch serious and constructive negotiations between the two sides urgently and to refrain from any measures that obstruct the efforts made in this regard.
The Egyptian diplomat “underscored during the meeting the necessity to build on the ceasefire declaration by stopping all practices that would lead to tensions and the escalation of confrontations related to the Palestinian lands,” the statement said.
Shoukry also “affirmed the necessity of taking into account the special sensitivity related to East Jerusalem, Al-Aqsa Mosque and all the Islamic and Christian sanctities”.
The Egyptian minister reiterated Egypt's unwavering stance on the need to reach a two-state solution, as the only way to achieve the desired permanent peace, security and stability in the region.
Shoukry also stressed the self-determination right of Palestinians through establishing their independent state based on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as the capital, in accordance to relevant international references.
Egypt will continue its endeavours and contacts with all relevant parties in pursuit of this goal, the statement cited Shoukry as saying.
Earlier, Head of Egypt's General Intelligence Service (GIS) Abbas Kamel, leading a security delegation, left for Israel and the Palestinian territories to discuss means in firming up the ceasefire.
Kamel conveyed a message of support from President El-Sisi to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, reaffirming Egypt's full backing of the Palestinian people, their inalienable rights and their cause.
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