Israel’s former Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has called to strengthen his country’s cooperation with Egypt and to support Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi in “his fight against terrorism in Sinai”.
In televised remarks, the head of Israel’s Beiteinu party stressed the need for Israel to support Al-Sisi, though adding the caveat that Israel should never be directly involved in Sinai.
Lieberman added that Israel should reach closer cooperation with Egypt, noting that it would be a serious mistake to act independently in Sinai.
He pointed out that intelligence cooperation between Israel and Egypt with regards to Sinai would serve Israel’s best interest. Lieberman claimed that the Gaza Strip has turned into a refuge for Islamic State militants who operate in Sinai.
Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu paid his condolences to Egypt following the attack by Islamic State militants that targeted Egyptian army posts in Sinai last Wednesday, which resulted in dozens of deaths.
Netanyahu said that Israel is closely following the events in Sinai and that it will take all necessary security measures to protect its own interests, pointing out that the security barrier erected by his government along the border between Sinai and the Negev desert has proved useful in repelling attempts to infiltrate Israeli territory.
Israel’s Channel Ten said in August last year that Netanyahu was pleased with the development of Israel’s “strategic relationship” with Egypt, and that he makes frequent and long phone calls to Al- Sisi.
(Middle East Monitor)