Egypt Says Israeli Response to Deaths Insufficient

Crowds protest at the Israeli Embassy in Cairo as Egyptian-Israeli tensions rise

Crowds of Egyptians protested at the Israeli Embassy in Cairo after Israel expressed regret over the killing of five Egyptian security personnel. Egypt condemned Israel in a statement after a second cabinet crisis meeting Saturday.

“Egyptian blood is not cheap and the government will not accept that Egyptian blood gets shed for nothing,” state news agency MENA quoted a cabinet statement as saying.The Israeli promise to work with Egypt to investigate the killings is “positive in appearance but does not fit with the weight of the incident and the state of Egyptians’ outrage from the Israeli actions’, MENA added.

After a series of tit-for-tat attacks between Gaza and Israel, followed by a series of rockets fired at southern Israel from Gaza, a Hamas official said Sunday that Gaza militants have agreed to a ceasefire in order to prevent any further escalation of attacks, saying they “are ready to halt fire, but Israel has to agree.” The Israeli government has not issued a statement regarding the ceasefire.

This series of incidents could precipitate a disintegration of the decades-long relationship between Egypt and Israel, whereby Egypt maintains passive subservience towards Israel in exchange for copious U.S. economic, military, and diplomatic support. That relationship was already expected to change with more democratic control after the fall of Mubarak, but the unjustified killing of Egyptian forces may quicken the severance.

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