Israel aims to maintain 'stability' of region: PM - Pakistan Today

Israel aims to maintain ‘stability’ of region: PM

JERUSALEM – Israel is watching developments in Egypt carefully and its efforts are focused on maintaining the “stability and security” of the region, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday.
“We are attentively following what is going on in Egypt and in our region,” Netanyahu told reporters at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting after holding late-night talks with top intelligence officers and key ministers.
“Our efforts are focused on preserving the stability and security in our region,” he said. Peace between Israel and Egypt has existed for more than three decades and the aim was “to ensure that these relations continue to exist,” Netanyahu said, while insisting Israel would act “responsibly, with restraint and maximum discretion.”
Underlining the sensitivity of Arab-Israeli relations, Netanyahu ordered members of his normally voluble cabinet to make no public statements about events in Egypt. “It is up to us to act responsibly, with restraint and maximum discretion so I have ordered my ministers not to make any pronouncements,” he said.
As well as consulting with his ministers, Netanyahu said he had also spoken with US President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton about the developments in Egypt, where a wave of massive protests are engulfing the country.
So far, more than 100 people have been killed in the biggest demonstrations to sweep the country since the late 1970s, with protesters demanding the removal of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. Israeli financial daily Globes said on its website that the unrest in Egypt pushed down benchmark Israeli share indices in Sunday trading.
It said that the Tel Aviv 25 index fell by more than 3.4 percent and the Tel Aviv 100 index was down by 2.5 percent. “Geopolitical shocks, especially in the Middle East, tend to unsettle markets. Investors are afraid that the riots in Egypt will spread to other Arab countries, such as Saudi Arabia, one of the world’s largest oil exporters,” it wrote. “With the Arab world in turmoil, the Israeli capital market is hunkering down.”

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