Ex-Egyptian ambassador to Israel Bassiouny passes away

Egyptian diplomat passes away in his home at age 74, Egyptian media reports; was ambassador to Tel Aviv from 1986 until 2000.

bassiounny 224.88 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
bassiounny 224.88
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
Famed former Egyptian ambassador to Israel Mohammed Bassiouny died in his home in Egypt Sunday at the age of 74, Egyptian media reported.
According to Egyptian media reports quoting Bassiouny 's son, the former ambassador was suffering from hypertension and diabetes and had undergone coronary surgery recently.
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Bassiouny was sent to manage the Egyptian embassy in Tel Aviv in 1982 after Egypt recalled its ambassador at the time in protest of the Lebanon War. He served in that position until he was appointed ambassador to Israel in 1986, a position he remained in until he was recalled in 2000 in protest of the outbreak of the Al-Aksa Intifada.

In recent years, Bassiouny found himself the center of a controversy after being quoted saying that he worked for Egyptian intelligence during his time in Israel, a charge which he flatly denied, calling the reports "libel."

Bassiouny was also caught up in a sex scandal during his time in Tel Aviv, when he was accused of sexual harassment by a belly dancer. The criminal complaint was dropped due to diplomatic immunity and the sensitive nature of Egyptian-Israeli relations.