This comes amid reports that the tense relationship between Israel and Egypt is on the verge of collapse following weeks of a ‘deepening chill’ amid the IDF’s war on Hamas.
By JERUSALEM POST STAFF JANUARY 27, 2024 21:06
Smoke rises amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, January 21, 2024. (photo credit: IBRAHEEM ABU MUSTAFA/REUTERS)
Israel informed Egypt on Saturday evening of its intention to send troops into Rafah and the Philadelphi Corridor, despite Egypt’s firm opposition to such a decision, Maariv reported, citing Sky News Arabia.
According to the report, Egypt rejected the request.
Head of the State Information Services (SIS) Diaa Rashwan said earlier this week, “It must be strictly emphasized that any Israeli move in this direction will lead to a serious threat to Egyptian-Israeli relations.”
In response to a question about Qatar and Egypt, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Saturday evening that “Relations with Egypt are ongoing and normal between the governments all the time. Each of us has interests; Egypt needs to say certain things. They take care of their interests, and we take care of ours.”
Former IDF spokesman Avi Benyahu also hinted this week in his X account that the IDF may make its way further south, reaching Rafah, Maariv reported.
Trucks carrying aid arrive, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Rafah, January 17, 2024 (credit: REUTERS/MOHAMMED SALEM)
In the Arab media, news has spread according to the IDF demands that the soldiers on the Egyptian side clear the corridor for the IDF’s arrival.
Israeli-Egyptian relations already tense
The Wall Street Journal also reported the same day as the Sky News report that the tense relationship between Israel and Egypt is on the verge of collapse following weeks of a ‘deepening chill’ amid the IDF’s war on Hamas.
The report stated that Netanyahu had not spoken to his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in weeks, with the latter refusing to take calls from the prime minister, and said that Cairo is “convinced” of a secret Israeli plan to expel the Palestinians from the Strip to the Sinai Peninsula.