ElBaradei Exposes Secret U.S.-Egypt Talks on Israel
Mohamed ElBaradei, a prominent Egyptian political figure and a possible candidate for the presidency, said on Tuesday that the United States is doing whatever it can within to stop Egypt from annulling the 1979 peace agreement with Israel.
In an interview with the Iranian-based Fars news agency, ElBaradei revealed that the future of the Camp David Accord has been the focus of recent meetings between Egypt’s ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) and Washington.
“The negotiations were completely secret and confidential,” ElBaradei told the news agency, adding, “What the supreme military council said was that the talks were about bilateral and mutual relations, but I believe that Americans wanted to ensure that the deals signed between Egypt and Israel will remain intact if Islamists ascend to power.”
The two Islamist parties affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafi movement have won the majority of votes in the first two rounds of elections in the country.
The ultra-conservative Salafist Al-Nour party said last week it is willing to hold talks with Israel.
A spokesman for the party told an Egyptian daily newspaper that some reports which said that party chairman Emad Abdul Ghafour was willing to maintain contacts with Israel were true - and added doing so did not violate Islamic principles.
Ghafour himself said that “treaties that Egypt has signed must be upheld, and we intend to respect them” but also claimed that Israel had not implemented certain clauses in its treaty with Egypt regarding the Arab population which at the time inhabited Judea, Samaria and Gaza, parts of which eventually comprised the Palestinian Authority.
“There are several clauses that must be enacted in order for the Palestinians to feel they have gained from the peace process,” Ghaffour said.
Earlier this month, a senior member of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood told the Fars news agency that the Camp David Accord between Egypt and Israel was “cruel” and said, “It is natural that after the victory of the revolution many things and issues should be studied and dealt with. Hence, the issue of revising the Camp David Accord will also be in the list of the top priorities of (Egypt's new) officials to be studied in its appropriate time.”