Barak, PM, reject Amos Gilad's Cairo comments

Prime Minister's Office, Defense Ministry distance themsleves from characterization of Egypt as "terrible dictatorship."

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November 4, 2012 02:42
1 minute read.
Amos Gilad [file]

Amos Gilad 311. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons (CC) by Hanay)

 
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The Prime Ministers Office and Defense Minister Ehud Barak distanced himself from negative evaluations of Egypt made by diplomatic-security chief, Amos Gilad, on Friday.

A senior official in the Prime Minister’s Office said, “Amos Gilad’s comments in no way represent those of the government of Israel. The government of Israel does not interfere in the internal affairs of other countries. We remain commitment to the peace treaty with Egypt.”

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Speaking at an event in Herzliya, Gilad said that despite wishes to set up a democracy, Egypt is turning into a “an appalling dictatorship,” adding that there was no contact whatsoever between Islamist President Mohamed Morsi and the Israeli government.

“There is no communication between our political leadership and Egypt’s, and I don’t think there will be. He [Morsi] won’t talk to us,” Gilad said.

Nevertheless, Gilad stressed that Israel and Egypt must preserve their peace treaty “at any cost.”

Soon afterwards, Barak released a statement saying that Gilad’s statements “do not reflect the stance of the security establishment and do not reflect the stance of Maj. [res]. Gilad.” The defense minister added that Gilad’s comments revolved around the “strategic importance of the peace treaty with Egypt, and the importance of proper relations with Egypt.”

“The defense establishment and Gilad do not intend to become involved in Egypt’s internal affairs,” the statement continued, reflecting a policy by the government to refrain from making any public comments on internal Egyptian developments.



Last week, while visiting London, Barak said Egypt has “entered a new era. The Muslim Brotherhood regime provides a tailwind for Hamas in Gaza and extremists in Jordan.” At the same time, he said, “The peace treaty with Egypt remains a strategic asset for both countries and we expect the new government to respect it, as well as all their other international obligations for the sake of peace and stability for the entire region.”

Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.

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