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Egypt: US secretary of state Anthony Blinken speaks to younger individuals in Cairo

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The strategic partnership between the U.S. and Egypt is of “nice consequence”, in line with Secretary of State Anthony Blinken.Blinken made the touch upon Sunday in Cairo the place he addressed a gathering of Egypt’s youth.

Noting that almost all of Egypt’s inhabitants is beneath 25, Blinken stated it was necessary to interact with them “as a result of fairly actually, you’ll be those making this nation and you’ll be those who’re going to hold ahead the connection with the USA.”

The US high diplomat started a tour of the Center East in Cairo on Sunday amid a spike in Israeli-Palestinian violence, with the slim hope of utilizing US affect to attempt to ease tensions.

Earlier than visiting Jerusalem and Ramallah within the occupied West Financial institution on Monday and Tuesday, Blinken will meet with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi and his international minister Sameh Shukri.

The Israeli-Palestinian battle is prone to dominate the discussions between the 2 allies, with Egypt traditionally taking part in an middleman position between the 2 protagonists.

This journey, scheduled for a very long time, comes in the course of an Israeli-Palestinian escalation.

On Friday, a Palestinian shot and killed seven individuals in East Jerusalem earlier than being shot useless. On Saturday, a Palestinian shot and wounded two Israelis in East Jerusalem, the Israeli occupied a part of the town. On Sunday, Israeli guards killed a Palestinian within the West Financial institution, a Palestinian territory occupied by Israel since 1967.

Additionally on Friday, the Israeli military shelled the Gaza Strip in response to rocket fireplace from the blockaded enclave.

The brand new outbreak was exacerbated by the deadliest Israeli raid in years on Thursday within the West Financial institution city of Jenin, through which 9 Palestinians have been killed.

– No change” –

Washington condemned an “appalling” assault in East Jerusalem and Blinken will urge Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to “take pressing steps towards de-escalation,” the State Division stated.

If in non-public American officers don’t cover their frustration with the escalation, the margin of maneuver of the Secretary of State appears restricted.

Consultants interviewed by AFP don’t count on any important breakthroughs, the USA will most likely be content material to hammer residence their assist for the two-state answer, Israeli and Palestinian.

“The most effective they’ll obtain is that issues stabilise in an effort to keep away from a repeat of Could 2021,” the final battle between Israel and Palestinian armed teams, stated Aaron David Miller, an knowledgeable on the Carnegie Endowment for Worldwide Peace in Washington.

For Ghaith Al-Omari, an knowledgeable on the Washington Institute, “this go to doesn’t sign any change within the American place relating to the Israeli-Palestinian battle” however “the dialog (with Mahmoud Abbas) will not be going to be nice”.

– Cascading visits –

Mr Blinken’s go to to Israel displays Washington’s need to re-engage with Mr Netanyahu, head of essentially the most right-wing authorities in Israel’s historical past. It comes after the go to of the White Home Nationwide Safety Advisor Jake Sullivan.

“I’ve by no means seen so many high-level visits beneath any administration,” stated Aaron David Miller.

“One other knowledgeable, David Makovsky of the Washington Institute, agrees, whereas CIA Director William Burns not too long ago visited the area, together with Cairo.

In Israel, Mr Blinken will stress “the significance of sustaining the historic establishment” on the Esplanade of the Mosques in East Jerusalem, a hotbed of rigidity between Israelis and Palestinians. The location is the third holiest place in Islam and the holiest place in Judaism.

The Abraham Accords, a normalisation course of between Israel and several other Arab international locations, must also be on the agenda, with Mr Netanyahu hoping to win over Saudi Arabia.

In Cairo on Sunday, Mr Blinken made no reference to the Israeli-Palestinian battle. He solely advised youth representatives on the American College in Cairo that he was visiting Israel and the West Financial institution.

“It is vital for us to debate not solely authorities to authorities but additionally with all segments of society and particularly the youthful technology,” he stated.

Egypt, one of many principal beneficiaries of US navy support, is repeatedly singled out for criticism, notably by the US, for its human rights document, which is taken into account “catastrophic” by NGOs.