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Egypt's Arabi Wants Camp David Accords Amended

Egyptian foreign Minister Nabil al-Arabi wants Egypt's 1979 peace accord with Israel altered; makes a second run at hiking gas prices.
By Gabe Kahn.
First Publish: 5/26/2011, 5:32 PM / Last Update: 5/26/2011, 6:37 PM

The Palestine Information Center claims Egyptian foreign minister Nabil al-Arabi is studying a proposal to amend the 1979 Camp David Accords signed between Israel and Egypt.

Arabi, who is slated to become the secretary general of the Arab League later this year, was the force behind Egypt's recent attempt to raise the price Israel pays Egypt for gas retroactively to 2008.

Citing "senior Egyptian diplomats," PIC said Arabi has been overseeing a board of legal experts and diplomats for the past two months to study the Camp David accords and determine how Egypt and the Arabs can benefit from several items that have thus far been neglected.

The sources said that Arabi is confident that the committee will succeed, even though the treaty was signed over thirty years ago. Observers suggest Arabi's review of the Accords is a second run at obtaining the gas price hike, which Israel has, to date, refused.

One of the clauses that Arabi is reviewing, according to the sources, states the parties had agreed to set up a committee for mutual financial settlements. Arabi maintains this gives Egypt the right to receive the rate differentials in gas prices supplied to Israel during Mubarak's regime.

The sources added that Arabi wishes to properly apply the treaty and not to terminate it, which runs counter to popular sentiment in post-Mubarak Egypt. Amending it, however, would necessitate Israeli consent.

Polls suggest 54% of Egypt's citizens want the treaty with Israel canceled.