The new Union for the Mediterranean has suffered a severe blow and now there is no sign of resuming its activities following a row between Egypt and Israel. As a result, a meeting of foreign ministers of the EU-Mediterranean organisation, scheduled to be held in Istanbul next month, has been postponed indefinitely.
According to press reports, Egypt's Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit rejected the presence of Israeli counterpart Avigdor Lieberman at the meeting after the latter said during a parliament speech that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak "can go to hell". According to ynet, a senior Israeli official referred to Egypt as a "negative factor."
During the past weeks France has launched mediation efforts between the two sides but they failed and the summit has been delayed.
The Mediterranean Union was launched in Paris last year.