Mubarak Warns of Mideast 'Chaos' If Israel Wipes out Arafat
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has said that there will be chaos in the Middle East if Israel eliminates Palestinian President Yasser Arafat.
In an interview published Friday by the Lebanese daily As-Safir, Mubarak said, "If they (the Israelis) make the mistake of killing Arafat, it would be a crime against the Palestinian people but also against the people of Israel," Mubarak told the newspaper.
"Several leaders will emerge and each one of them will attempt to increase his popularity by carrying out anti-Israeli violence inside and outside" the Jewish state, he added.
If Arafat was wiped out "there would be chaos and they (the Israelis) should be aware that as a result the situation would be dangerous," Mubarak said.
He also called on the United States and the European Union to exert pressure on Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon for a "return to the negotiating table."
Turkish Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said Friday that Sharon had told him personally over phone that Israeli wanted to get rid of Arafat.
Mubarak’s statement came also as his foreign minister Ahmad Maher said he failed in a peace mission to Israel, during which he met with Sharon, Foreign Minister Shimon Peres and Defense Minister Binyamin Ben Eliezer.
He also met with Arafat – Albawaba.com