New Israeli ambassador arrives in Egypt with hope for peace

Israel's new ambassador to Egypt expressed hope on Monday that Egypt and Israel will continue to have peaceful relations.

"The Egyptian revolution will succeed, God willing," Ambassador Yaakov Amitai said after arriving in Cairo. He added that he is happy to work in Egypt during this historic moment for the country and region.

Amitai will succeed outgoing Ambassador Yitzhak Levanon, who has completed his term. Levanon left Cairo after dozens of protesters attacked the Israeli Embassy on 10 September.

Asked what he expects for Egyptian-Israeli relations if Islamists rise to power in Egypt, Amitai said, "Egyptian-Israeli peace is strong … I am confident that peace be maintained between the two countries."

He categorically denied claims that an Israeli official said war between Egypt and the Israel was possible.

"My job is to reinforce peace between Egypt and Israel," Amitai said.

Amitai said he would have to learn many things before talking about Egyptian issues.

"I should not tackle internal Egyptian affairs," he said.

Amitai said other embassy workers will arrive in stages and that he doesn't know where the embassy will be located.

Amitai worked at the Israeli Embassy in Cairo in the mid-1980s, then in the US from 1989 to 1993. He then worked as an ambassador in Kenya. He last worked at the Israeli Embassy in Ethiopia for three years.

The ambassador was received by a Foreign Ministry representative and the Israeli consul in Cairo, who had traveled to Tel Aviv last week after overseeing the preparations for the new ambassador's arrival.

Translated from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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