Netanyahu in Cairo
Photo: Amos Ben Gershom, GPO

Netanyahu, Mubarak hold 'friendly' meeting

PM's Office says two leaders met in Cairo to discuss peace process with Palestinians, Gilad Shalit

The meeting between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak "was held with a friendly atmosphere and was thorough", the Prime Minister's Office said Tuesday following the meeting at the presidential palace in Cairo.


"The two leaders discussed ways to jumpstart the peace process with the Palestinians, and the subject of efforts to release kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit was also discussed. President Mubarak expressed his commitment to the promotion of peace," the statement said.  


Egypt's foreign minister said he was encouraged by Netanyahu's visit. He said the Israeli leader was serious about restarting peace talks with the Palestinians, but refused to share details of what Netanyahu proposed. He did say Netanyahu presented proposals that "surpassed" Israel's previous positions.


Aboul Gheit said Netanyahu gave his Egyptian hosts the impression that he wants to get diplomacy moving again, and that "everything is on the table."

Leaders met for two hours (Photo: Amos Ben Gershom, GPO)


Netanyahu arrived in Egypt Tuesday morning and met with Mubarak for two hours. In addition, a separate meeting was held between Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman and Industry, Trade, and Labor Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer.


Netanyahu was also scheduled to meet later with Egypt's finance and foreign ministers, after which a joint meeting between top officials from both sides is scheduled to take place. The sides intend to discuss nuclear Iran and kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit.


The prime minister is expected back in Israel Tuesday evening.


Roee Nahmias and The Associated Press contributed to this report


פרסום ראשון: 12.29.09, 16:07
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