Some 31 years after Israel
withdrew from the Sinai Peninsula,
there are those in Cairo who claim that the southern city of Eilat
should return to Egyptian authority.
Attorney Otoman al-Hafanawi who was part of the legal team in the civil trial against Hosni Mubarak, on Sunday filed a petition against senior officials in the previous regime, including former President Mubarak,
claiming that they did not act to restore Egyptian control of Eilat (in Arabic: Umm Al-Rashrash).
The petition mentions the names of former minister for parliamentary affairs, Mubarak's political advisor, current foreign minister Mohamed Kamel Amr and Egypt's ambassador in Turkey.
Eilat hotels (Photo: Yoav Glasner)
The petition states: "Those who have been mentioned did not lift a finger to retrieve the Egyptian territory which was conquered in 1967 (a mistake listed in the original document – the date was actually 1949) in spite of the fact that it is genuine Egyptian territory with land estimated at 1,500 square kilometers."
The petition also claims that the area had a Christian identity but that Israel 'Judaized' the region.
The petitioners also demanded that the chain of events leading to Egypt's current attitude to the area. The claim also includes Turkey's ambassador in Egypt
as "according to the maps and international agreements, including the Constantinople Accords, Umm Al-Rashrash is Egyptian land."
The Constantinople Accords which were signed in 1888 by the European powers, regulated the status of the Suez Canal.
The conquest of Eilat during the War of Independence
(Operation Uvda) ended when Israeli forces flew the flag over the Umm Al-Rashrash police station. Uvda was the last operation on the war and was a major source in shaping the State of Israel's borders in the Negev.
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