"We hope to see president Morsi receiving official Israeli representatives," said Lieberman
Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman gestures during a press conference in Tirana on August 2. Lieberman on Tuesday urged Egypt's President Mohamed Morsi to warm relations with Israel by visiting Jerusalem. © Gent Shkullaku - AFP/File
AFP
Last updated: August 28, 2012

Israel foreign minister urges Morsi to visit Jerusalem

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman on Tuesday urged Egypt's President Mohamed Morsi to warm relations with Israel by visiting Jerusalem.

"I was happy to hear Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi speak of Egypt's commitment to peace with Israel, to the Camp David peace accords and to the battle against terror," Lieberman said at a legal conference.

He was referring to a Monday interview with an international news agency that was widely picked up by Israeli media in which Morsi indicated he would preserve Egypt's 1979 peace treaty with the Jewish state.

"These are very important tidings," said Lieberman.

"But whoever talks about peace and stability must understand that it cannot just be vague and hypothetical," he said.

"Therefore, we hope to see president Morsi receiving official Israeli representatives, we want to see him giving interviews to Israeli media and we want to see him in Jerusalem as a guest of President (Shimon) Peres and the state of Israel," he said in remarks relayed by his bureau.

Israel has watched warily as the influential Muslim Brotherhood, to which Morsi belongs, has gained increasing power in post-uprising Egypt, fearing for the future of the crucial, if cold, peace treaty between the two states.

Lieberman also said that Israel was indebted to Washington for coordinating between the two countries over what has been "a very sensitive period."

Egypt's military has launched an unprecedented campaign in the Sinai after hardline Islamist militants killed 16 Egyptian soldiers in an attack on a border outpost on August 5.

It was the biggest Egyptian military build-up in the Sinai peninsula since the peace agreement was signed.

© AFP 2012

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