Photo: AP
Hosni Mubarak
Photo: AP
Mubarak to Iran, Hizbullah: Beware the wrath of Egypt
Egyptian president says will not allow 'regional powers opposing peace' to destabilize Cairo's regime, 'bring region to brink of abyss'; confirms Prime Minister Netanyahu was invited to see him, but without Foreign Minister Lieberman

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak warned Iran and Hizbullah against "Cairo's wrath" on Thursday, saying his country will respond harshly to any attempt to infringe on its national security.


"Egypt will not allow any regional power which opposes peace to infiltrate it and jeopardize its security and stability," he said, speaking before Egyptian Military officers in Ismailia.


"They (Iran and Hizbullah) are trying to enforce their agenda on our Arab world. They see the division in the Arab and Palestinian worlds and they're pushing their agents to the region to threaten Egypt's national security and undermine its stability. We will not allow them to bring the region to the brink of an abyss.


"We are aware of your plans," he warned, "We will uncover all of your plots and we will respond to your ploys. Stop using the Palestinian issue and beware the wrath of Egypt."


Israeli PM welcom, FM not

Earlier Thursday, Mubarak confirmed an invitation to Israel's right-wing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to come to Egypt, but without his firebrand Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman.


"The Israeli prime minister might come to see us in May," Mubarak said, confirming Israeli statements that Netanyahu had been invited to visit the Jewish state's most important Arab ally "in the next few weeks." 


"Some say... that he will bring his foreign minister with him," Mubarak said during a speech to mark the end of Israel's 15-year occupation of the Sinai peninsula in 1982


"The Israeli prime minister is coming alone. His cabinet chief will come with him. He will not bring any other minister with him," Mubarak said.


Israel's Foreign Ministry said that firebrand nationalist Lieberman, who last year said that Mubarak could "go to hell" if he continued to refuse to visit Israel, had been invited to visit Egypt.


The invitations were made during a visit to Jerusalem on Wednesday by Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman.


Relations between Egypt and Israel have deteriorated since Lieberman was named foreign minister, with Egyptian counterpart Ahmed Abul Gheit pointedly saying he would not shake his hand.


Egypt, which signed a landmark peace deal with Israel in 1979, has an uneasy relationship with Lieberman, whose hardline stance has raised concerns about the fate of peacemaking with the Palestinians.  


First published: 23.04.09, 14:34
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