Egypt Offers Help Getting Missing Soldiers from Hamas

YERUSHALAYIM -

Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry told Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu during their meeting in Yerushalayim on Sunday that Egypt is prepared to mediate for Israel with Hamas for the return of the bodies of two IDF soldiers — on conditon that Israel acts to advance the peace process with the Palestinians.

Shoukry said that Egypt would be satisfied if Israel would accept either the French or the Egyptian peace initiatives.

In their meeting they also discussed the possibility of an official visit by Netanyahu to Egypt, as well as the possibility of a three-way summit involving Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

“This visit is important for several reasons,” said Netanyahu.

“It reflects the change in relations between Israel and Egypt, including President Sisi’s important call to advance the peace process with the Palestinians and with Arab countries.”

The Egyptian President al-Sisi said in May that there was a “real opportunity” for an Israeli-Palestinian deal that could lead to warmer ties between his country and Israel.

Sisi urged Israelis and Palestinians to seize what he said was a “real opportunity” and hailed his own country’s peace deal with Israel.

The Egyptian statement on Sunday said the two would discuss “laying the foundation and specifics of confidence-building between Palestinians and Israelis to create a supportive environment to resume direct negotiations between them with the aim of reaching a comprehensive and just solution.”