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Egypt court to rule on Israel gas case Thursday

Mubarak-era oil minister Sameh Fahmy among those accused of squandering public funds in gas deal with Israel

Ahram Online , Wednesday 27 Jun 2012
Sameh Fahmy
Egypt's oil minister between 1999 and 2011, Sameh Fahmy (Photo: Reuters)
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The Cairo Criminal Court will on Thursday deliver its verdict in the trial of six Mubarak-era officials and a businessman accused of squandering public funds in a gas deal with Israel.  

The accused men comprise of Sameh Fahmy, oil minister from 1999 to 2011, five officials from the ministry and fugitive tycoon Hussein Salem.

Egypt agreed to provide Israel with natural gas in 2005 in a deal built on the 1979 Camp David peace treaty. The prosecution claimed the deal caused losses to Egypt of over $714 million.

In April 2012, Egypt unilateraly terminated the deal because Israel "has failed to meet payment deadlines in recent months", according to Mohamed Shoeib, the CEO of EGAS.

The pipeline transporting Egyptian gas to Israel and Jordan has witnessed 14 explosions by unknown assailants since the 2011 uprising that ousted Hosni Mubarak from power.

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