JERUSALEM (Mar. 2)
Israeli diplomats will fly to Cairo Monday to continue their talks with Egypt as scheduled on the Taba arbitration. The recent violence in Cairo and other Egyptian cities has not been allowed to delay the talks’ timetable — with both sides seeking to demonstrate a business as usual approach.
It was not know here Sunday whether the talks would take place, as usual, at the Mena House Hotel near the pyramids in Giza. The lobby of the hotel was slightly damaged by rioting security police last Tuesday night and an annex was also attacked.
President Hosni Mubarak, meanwhile, has reportedly conveyed his thanks to Premier Shimon Peres for the Israeli Premier’s public words of support at the height of the disturbances in Egypt. Mubarak conveyed his gratitude during a telephone conversation over the weekend with Minister-Without-Portfolio Ezer Weizman, who called to offer his own strong support.
Israeli observers are confident now that the wave of violence is well under control, but there remains a lingering concern over the fundamental stability of Mubarak’s regime. The Egyptians’ determination to hold the Taba talks as scheduled is seen here as a deliberate demonstration by Mubarak that the crisis has been weathered successfully.