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Egypt pushes for meeting to discuss ‘Deal of the Century’

August 20, 2018 at 1:05 pm

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi (L) and Saudi Arabia’s King Salman Bin Abdulaziz

Egypt has been working to have a meeting with Saudi Arabia, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority to discuss a final decision on the US “Deal of the Century”, the plan intended to liquidate the Palestinian cause, Egyptian diplomatic sources revealed to Al-Araby Al-Jadeed on Sunday.

Foreign ministers from all four countries along with intelligence chiefs are planned to come together at the summit, the preparations for which started after the visit of Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to Saudi Arabia’s King Salman Bin Abdulaziz. It follows a series of meetings attended by Egyptian, Saudi and US officials.

The sources said that Egypt decided to prepare for such a meeting in order to take a final position regarding the American plan as quickly as possible due to US pressure being put on Cairo and Riyadh. The Egyptians are also involved in mediation between Hamas and Israel and the efforts to end the internal Palestinian division.

Read: Egypt accepts Palestinian factions’ amendments to reconciliation deal

Jordan’s King Abdullah and PA President Mahmoud Abbas apparently welcomed the Egyptian efforts initially, but stressed that Cairo has imposed a media blackout on the issue. They noted that the meeting will discuss whether to reject or accept the deal.

The summit is expected to be held after a truce is agreed between the Palestinians and Israel, the sources explained. Al-Sisi’s administration would see whether Israel respects such a truce or not. Cairo has warned the US that the proposed deal might fail because there are no clear American guarantees that Israel will respect it, nor regarding the size of the US and Gulf States’ support for Egypt, Jordan and Gaza; the American readiness to give logistical and military aid to Egypt during its operations in Sinai; and the US proposals for the security file in Gaza during the transition period between the start of the deal’s implementation and the establishment of a Palestinian state.

In July, Al-Sisi described the deal as being a media term more than a political agreement. He pointed out that Egypt has been working to find a persuasive exit for the Palestinian cause.