Mubarak discusses with Arafat, developments of the situation in the occupied lands
Egypt-Palestine, Politics, 10/1/2001
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak yesterday received Palestinian Leader Yasser Arafat with whom he reviewed the results of the meeting he has recently held with Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and developments of the situation in the occupied territories.
The Palestinian leader hailed Egyptian stance supporting Palestinian cause.
At a press conference after meeting Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher, Arafat said that some Israeli politicians are still insisting on carrying on with military attacks against the Palestinians.
On how to invest the current situation in the US, Arafat said that the entire world should realise that the Palestinian cause is not only a Palestinian question but also an Arab, Islamic and Christian issue. 'The whole world should get the gist of these developments at the regional and international levels,' he added.
About the projected meeting between Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and Palestinian Legislative Council Speaker Ahmed Kore'i and Palestinian Local Administration Minister Sa'eb Erekat Sunday afternoon, Arafat said "despite the continuation of aggressive acts against the Palestinians, I did not order suspending political meetings with the Israelis."
He said that he told Kore'i and Erekat to go and meet Peres Sunday.
Arafat stressed that the Israelis did not implement what has been agreed upon at Gaza airport meeting as they promised to pull out from the places they re-occupied within 48 hours but so far no step has been taken in this regard.
"More than 21 Palestinians have been killed and 230 others wounded since the Gaza airport meeting," Arafat said, stressing that for the first time Israel resorted to the internationally banned stun bombs in its attacks against the Palestinians.
Asked on reports published in Israeli papers that Peres was convinced that Israeli Chief of Staff Shaul Mofaz's office wanted to assassinate Arafat, the Palestinian Leader said "not only that, there is more than that."
Maher, on his part, said there is a main connection between terrorism and the continuation of the flashpoints in the region and in the world.
Concerning the fact that Arafat seemed during his visit to Cairo frustrated with the Israeli practices, Maher said that we are all frustrated with the Israeli government because it never keeps its promises.
"But still we will continue efforts, especially as we feel there is a desire by the American government to help return the situation back to normal in a way that will allow the resumption of the peace negotiations," Maher said.
"Despite the US's preoccupation with the recent events, it has realised that it is in its interest, and in everyone's interest, to put the Palestinian cause among its priorities," he added.
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