Saturday, August 20, 2011

Israel mulls Egypt's ambassador recall

Egyptian protesters, calling on the Israeli ambassador to leave and the Egyptian authorities to stop exporting gas to Israel, clash with military police standing guard in front of the Israeli embassy in Cairo August 19, 2011.

Source: Press TV

Israeli diplomatic officials are holding discussions on Egypt's decision to withdraw its ambassador to Tel Aviv as tensions escalate between the two countries.

"There was such an Egyptian announcement and we are holding discussions based on what has transpired," Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor was quoted by AFP as saying on Saturday.

Egypt's state television said earlier Saturday that Cairo had decided to recall its envoy from Tel Aviv to protest the killing of five Egyptian policemen in an Israel attack near the border on Thursday.

Egyptian authorities have said the envoy would be withdrawn until there is an investigation of the incident and an official apology from the Israel regime.

High-ranking Egyptian politicians have reacted to the deadly incident.

“Israel has to realize that the days in which our sons are killed without an appropriate and strong reaction are forever gone,” said Amr Moussa, the former foreign minister and head of the Arab League, on his personal Twitter account.

Former Egyptian ambassador to the United States Nabil Fahmy has also stated that such violence against a “democratic Egypt” is unacceptable.

Egypt's cabinet has summoned the Israeli ambassador to Cairo over the issue, expressing regret over the reaction of Tel Aviv to the incident.

"Egypt deplores the irresponsible and hasty statements made by some leaders in Israel, which lack the wisdom and prudence and pass judgment before arriving at the truth, particularly keeping in mind the sensitivity of Egyptian-Israeli relations," the cabinet said in a statement.

Meanwhile, angry Egyptians have continued their protest outside the Tel Avivi embassy in Cairo, calling on authorities to cut ties with the Tel Aviv regime and expel its ambassador.

Israel launched massive airstrikes in Gaza and the border area with Egypt on Thursday after eight Israelis were killed in an attack on an Israeli bus near Eilat, south of Israel near the Egyptian border.

At least 16 Palestinians have been killed in the Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip during the past two days.

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