Despite declaring several times that the Philadelphi deal between Egypt and Israel is ready to be signed, Israel keeps delaying signing the deal which allows Egypt to deploy 750 Egyptian troops along the border between Egypt and Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip.

The agreement is still pending Knesset approval as Israel added a new request for Egypt to accept before signing the deal.

Israel demanded that Egypt undertake not to transfer arms and ammunition to the Palestinian Authority in the Gaza Strip.

The agreement in its current form covers only the prevention of terror, smuggling and infiltrations in the area and does not mention among the ‘barred activities’, the handing over of arms to an official entity, such as the PA’s security forces.

The demand that Egypt refrain from allowing arms through to the PA was raised during a meeting of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee at which Israeli lawmakers,  spoke of ‘holes in the Philadelphi agreement.’

Under the agreement, the Egyptian Border Guard Force will number 750 troops and administrative officials. This number will be boosted by 30 members of the Egyptian Navy, who will be entrusted with guarding the coastline. In keeping with Israeli demands, the naval supervision will be carried out 24 hours a day by means of three boats.

The Egyptian border guards will be equipped with armored personnel carriers, RPGs, assault rifles, light machine guns, jeeps and quad bikes. The force will not be allowed to erect fortifications, but only lookout posts and guard towers.

The Camp David agreement signed between Egypt and Israel in 1979, limited the number of Egyptian security presence on the borders with the Gaza Strip.

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