Egyptian officials in Cairo denied reports that the Egyptian President Hosny Mubarak is planning to visit Israel, saying that he does not plan to leave Egypt until the end of the year.
The statements of the Cairo officials came after the Israeli Foreign Minister Sylvan Shalom said on Tuesday that he believes Mubarak is Ã¢â‚¬Å“quite likelyÃ¢â‚¬Â to visit Israel.Ã‚Â
Suleiman Awad, Mubarak’s spokesman, told The Associated Press that Mubarak does not have any plans to leave Egypt until the end of this year.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“The president is busy with many things hereÃ¢â‚¬Â, Awad said, Ã¢â‚¬Å“We have the presidential and legislative elections, he does not plan to go anywhere outside EgyptÃ¢â‚¬Â.
Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon believes that Mubarak will most likely come to Israel in order to attend the tenth anniversary of the assassination of the former Israeli Prime Minster Yitzhak Rabin.
Shalom said that Mubarak will most likely not visit Jerusalem, and therefore he would not accept the invitation of Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin to appear before the Knesset.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“If MubarakÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s visit to Israel comes true, he would meet SharonÃ¢â‚¬Â, Shalom added.
Commenting on report on a visit by King Abdullah of Jordan, Shalom said that it was still unclear if he would be making an official visit to Israel.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“But, if this visit is not carried out, Abdullah and Sharon would meet at the UN General Assembly in New York later this monthsÃ¢â‚¬Â, Shalom stated.
Also, Shalom said that he hopes that other Muslim countries would establish diplomatic ties with Israel, as Pakistan did, and revealed that he had a meeting in Turkey with the Khursheed Kasuri, the Pakistani Foreign Minister last week.
The meeting was initiated by Pervez Musharraf, the Pakistani president, Shalom said.
Shalom described IsraelÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s relation with Pakistan is very important because Pakistan is the world’s second-largest Muslim country.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Israel had contacts with all Muslim countriesÃ¢â‚¬Â, Shalom said, Ã¢â‚¬Å“But in most cases there were secretiveÃ¢â‚¬Â.
Also, Shalom revealed that he intends to visit Tunisia this in November as a guest of the Tunisian president. The mother of Shalom, a Tunisian born, was also invited.