Members of Parliament start voting on the newly-proposed amendments to the 2014 Constitution on Thursday- Egypt Today/Hazem abdel-Samad
CAIRO - 18 October 2023: The Egyptian Parliament, in a solemn gesture of mourning, has lowered its flags as a mark of respect for the Palestinian martyrs. This heartfelt display of condolences from Egypt's legislative body signifies solidarity with the victims of recent tragic events in Palestine.
The Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, declared a three-day national mourning period across the Arab Republic of Egypt, starting from Wednesday, October 18, 2023, until Friday, October 20, 2023. This decision came in response to the tragic incident of the bombing of Al-Mamedany Hospital in Gaza and the loss of innocent lives, as well as in honor of all the martyrs from the Palestinian people.
President Sisi stressed that Egypt is a sovereign state and it rejects such attempts, adding that “if necessary, I can ask the Egyptians to come out and express their rejection to the refuge idea, and then you will see millions of Egyptians are ready to demonstrate as an expression of their rejection of the displacement of Palestinians from Gaza.”
President Sisi added during a joint press conference with the German Chancellor Ulf Schulz at the presidential headquarters that “Egypt rejects the military solution to the Palestinian cause or any attempts to forcibly displace the Palestinians from their land, or for this to come at the expense of the region,” pointing out that Egypt will remain in its position in support of the legitimate Palestinian right to its land.
“We do not justify any violent action against a civilian,” he added.
“Over the past years since the peace agreement with Israel, we were keen to make this path a strategic choice, and we seek for this path to be supported by other countries,” he said.
President Sisi reiterated Egypt’s rejection to the idea of pushing Palestinians to seek refuge in Sinai, saying “Displacing Palestinians from Gaza Strip to Sinai means transferring the conflict and the killings from Gaza to Sinai, where Sinai becomes a base for launching operations against Israel, and in this case, Israel will have the right to defend itself, so it directs its strikes to the Egyptian lands.”
He further added, “If Israel is thinking of displacement as a solution, there is the Negev desert in Israel, where they can transfer the Palestinians to until Israel finishes its announced military operation against armed groups, and then return them.”
President Sisi stated that his discussions with the German Chancellor dealt with the military confrontations between the Israeli and Palestinian sides, and the military escalation in the Gaza Strip, which claimed the lives of thousands of civilians on both sides, while also looking at the grave risks to civilians and the peoples of the region, as the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip has begun to deteriorate.
“The deterioration is in an unfortunate and unprecedented manner, and the continuation of the current military operations will have security and humanitarian repercussions that could get out of control. There is a danger of expanding the scope of the conflict if all international and regional parties do not unite their efforts to immediately stop the current escalation,” President Sisi added.
President Sisi explained: “Chancellor Schulz and I discussed the Egyptian efforts to contain the crisis through our extensive contacts with both sides of the conflict and all international and regional parties over the past days, and we agreed on the necessary need to return to open new horizons for settlement in order for the region to slide into a cycle of violence, exposing the lives of civilians to further danger.”
He further stressed that Egypt has not closed Rafah Border since the beginning of the crisis, and will continue to receive humanitarian aid.
Ambassador Diab Al-Louh, the Palestinian Ambassador in Cairo, called for an end to the Israeli occupation of Palestine and urged the United Nations Security Council to fulfill its responsibilities regarding the occupation and to support the establishment of full Palestinian sovereignty on its land.
He emphasized that the international community is facing one of its weakest moments, with the Security Council failing to pass a resolution to stop the aggression. Even the United States refused to release a statement condemning the situation in Palestine. The United States is openly biased towards the Israeli side, providing both financial and military support to the Israeli army. American warplanes were even involved in bombing Gaza, as evidenced by the missile that struck Al-Muamadani Hospital, which was launched from a U.S. aircraft.
He added that claims that the resistance was responsible for the hospital's bombing are false, as the strength of the attack and the flames it produced prove that it was the occupation forces that carried out the airstrike.