Egyptians Cheer Arafat as he Arrives for Talks with Mubarak
Crowds of Egyptians lined the streets of Alexandria on Wednesday to cheer Palestinian President Yaseer Arafat as his motorcade took him to the presidential palace at Ras al-Tin for talks with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.
An Egyptian journalist who was following the motorcade told AFP that they were cheering Arafat's firm stand on Jerusalem.
Arafat’s talks with Mubarak are aimed at briefing him on the failure of the Camp David summit and how to keep the peace talks with Israel moving forward.
Arafat entered one-on-one talks with Mubarak at the seafront presidential palace, an AFP reporter at the palace said, after arriving from Camp David where the Palestinian President rejected Israeli proposals on sharing sovereignty over east Jerusalem.
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak blamed Arafat for the failure of the summit, which stumbled mainly over competing Israeli-Palestinian claims for Jerusalem.
Arafat was greeted at Alexandria airport by a clutch of senior Egyptians, including Prime Minister Atef al-Ebeid, Defense Minister Mohammed Hussein Tantawi, Information Minister Safwat al-Sherif, Foreign Minister Amr Mussa, Mubarak's top advisor Osama al-Baz, and Alexandria Governor Mohammed Abdel Salam Mahgub.
Arafat was accompanied by his top aides Nabil Shaath and Yasser Abed Rabbo.
Ebeid, Tantawi, Sherif, Mussa and Baz all joined Mubarak later in an expanded round of talks with Arafat and his aides.
A Palestinian official said Arafat is scheduled to kick off a tour of Arab capitals next week.
Tayeb Abdul Rahim told AFP that Arafat will visit most Arab capitals to brief leaders on the failure of the peace summit with Israel, without giving further details of his itinerary – ALEXANDRIA (AFP)
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