Euromed meeting most likely not in Cairo
Israel criticized Egypt Sunday for refusing to let the Jewish state take part in a Euro-Mediterranean conference of chambers of commerce, saying that as a result the meeting will happen "in another place, at another date."
The union of Egyptian chambers of commerce blocked Israel's attendance at the conference scheduled for January 22-23 in Cairo, and the organizers announced Friday the indefinite postponement of the conference because of doubts over whether all delegations would attend.
Israel's foreign ministry said in a statement that it "condemned the decision of the union of Egyptian chambers of commerce."
"Following an appeal by the ministry of foreign affairs to the union of European chambers of commerce — Eurochambers (UCC) — the decision has been taken to cancel this event in Cairo and to stage it in another location, and at another date," the statement continues. "This decision was taken in coordination with representatives of the European Union," it said.
The ministry considers that the decision of the UCC goes against the "agreements on normalization between Israel and Egypt."
The organizers of the conference said their refusal to allow Israel's presence was "based on our regular position which is not to deal with the Jewish state so long as it does not pull out of the occupied Arab territories and the Palestinian people have not recovered their rights." — (AFP, Jerusalem)
© Agence France Presse 2001
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