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US President Donald Trump shakes hands with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, US, April 3, 2017..(Photo by: REUTERS)
Egypt's Sisi: Trump vital to resolving Israeli-Palestinian conflict
By YASSER OKBI/ MAARIV HASHAVUA
05/18/2017
Egyptian president to Israel: "The Arabs and Palestinians are ready for peace."
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said Wednesday that US President Donald Trump serves as a crucial link in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Speaking at a meeting with the chief editors of three Egyptian newspapers, Sisi expressed his confidence in Trump, saying "I believe in him and his abilities to resolve conflict."

"Trump is a great man who is not satisfied with anything but success, and we have confidence in his abilities and his promises," the Egyptian leader said.

Sisi made the remarks ahead of Trump's first presidential foreign trip that includes stops in Saudi Arabia, Israel and the Vatican. Trump is due to meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem on May 22 and with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Bethlehem on May 23.

In his comments Wednesday, Sisi urged the Israelis to seize what he said was an opportunity for peace.

"The Arabs and Palestinians are ready for peace," he stated in address to Israel. "You have an opportunity to reach peace. There is an opportunity for all of us to live together and achieve a better future for our people without hatred."

Egypt and Israel forged a historic peace treaty in 1979. Cairo has vied for a two-state solution to the decades-long conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.

While speaking to the journalists, Sisi also mentioned that he was planning to attend an Arab-Islamic-American summit in the Saudi capital of Riyadh during Trump's visit there, which was schedule to start Friday. Abbas was also slated to attend the conference.

Sisi and Trump previously met in Washington in early April and discussed resting bilateral relations that had been strained during the Obama administration. The two also spoke about efforts to combat militant Islamist extremism.

Later in March while Netanyahu was in the US, Trump said that he was open to ideas beyond a two-state solution, the longstanding bedrock of Washington on the Middle East conflict.

Jpost.com Staff contributed to this report.
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