Israel greatest nuclear threat: Egypt

May 5th, 2009 - 4:25 pm ICT by ANI  

Jerusalem, May 5 (ANI): Egypt has warned Western countries that their nuclear policies, which include pressuring Iran to give up its nuclear program, will fail as long as they ignore Israeli nuclear capabilities.

The Jerusalem Post quoted Egyptian foreign ministry spokesperson as saying that Israel is “the first and greatest threat to security in the region”.

Israel, however, categorically rejected that classification as “completely out of line.”

“If he can quote at least one occasion in which Israel has threatened any of its neighbors with the alleged nuclear weapon, then his statements would gain him credibility. Unless he produces evidence to support his claims, these kinds of remarks are completely out of line,” Israeli Foreign Ministry Spokesman Yigal Palmor said.

Egypt called on the international community to justly and indiscriminately apply the Non-Proliferation Treaty that requires states to comply with its provisions, and asked it to refrain from the adoption of double standards in pressuring states to abandon their programs.

“Cairo sought to realize the aims of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty to guarantee the security of all states, whereas possession of nuclear weapons by some countries disrupted the balance of power and encouraged other nations to address this imbalance by seeking to acquire nuclear weapons,” spokesman Hossam Zaki, in a declaration of the foreign ministry, said.

An Egyptian official told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that Cairo would prefer that Israel pursue diplomacy, rather than a military option, to address Iran’s nuclear program.

Also on Sunday, President Hosni Mubarak with his Philippine counterpart Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo said Egypt opposed any proliferation in the region and that efforts aimed at shedding light on the Iranian nuclear program must be accompanied by parallel efforts to deal with the Israeli program.

Tensions between Egypt and Iran have been particularly tense recently, with Cairo accusing a 49-member terrorist cell with links to Hizbullah of plotting to carry out attacks in the country. (ANI)

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