Arab states’ reaction to Israeli sovereignty move will be moderate, diplomatic sources say

Israel is working, apparently with success, in moderating the Arab reaction to Netanyahu’s sovereignty plan.

By David Isaac, World Israel News

Moderate Sunni Arab states will satisfy themselves with declarations of condemnation against Israel’s planned move to extend sovereignty over parts of Judea and Samaria and the Jordan Valley, Israel Hayom reports on Tuesday.

The Hebrew daily says that Israel is engaged in a wide-ranging diplomatic effort among Arab states, particularly Egypt and Jordan with whom it has peace treaties, to come to an agreement on an appropriate reaction to Israel’s plan.

The secret talks are being carried out by senior intelligence and security officials led by Mossad Chief Yossi Cohen and Egypt’s intelligence chief Abbas Kamil, a senior Arab official tells Israel Hayom. The two have already met several times, he says.

They have reached an agreement in which Israel can apply sovereignty and Egypt can register its official opposition, but in a way that doesn’t harm relations with Israel.

Although Egypt and Israel’s relations over the years have more resembled a ceasefire than actual peace, given the ferocious anti-Semitism rampant among the Egyptian people, in recent years the two countries have cooperated closely in tamping down al-Qaeda in the Sinai.

Still more recently, Israel and Egypt have a shared interest in preventing Turkey’s expansionist moves in the Mediterranean basin.

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The report confirms Palestinian fears, reported earlier this month, that the Arab states will only pay lip-service to Palestinian concerns and will take no action against Israel.

A senior Egyptian official told Israel Hayom that the Palestinians were right regarding Cairo’s reaction to Israel’s sovereignty plan. The Egyptians even succeeded in convincing the Jordanian security forces to recommend to King Abdullah II to express only verbal opposition, he says.

“Egyptian involvement in Libya, given the security developments there, concerns us far more than the Palestinian problem and the interests of Abu Mazen, who didn’t hesitate to turn to Turkey, which interferes with us in Libya,” the official said.