The Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice party in Egypt has said it has no plans to re-examine a 33-year-old peace treaty with Israel. The Camp David accords have been a major concern for Israelis and the Diaspora as the world waits to see who will be elected president of the North African nation’s new government.
“We will not put the Camp David accords, or any other agreement Egypt has signed, to a national referendum,” said Abd Al-Maujood Al-Dardiri, a member of the Egyptian parliament.
Khairat Al-Shater, the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate for the presidency, is predicted to win the post during the country’s May elections. A delegation of the party is currently in the US on the recommendation of Al-Shater, in order to allay fears that the new government will move away from its allies in the US. Ousted leader Hosni Mubarak had a strong working relationship with America and Israel.
An idea to conduct a national referendum to review the Camp David accord policies has been shied away from of late. However, a top aide to Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak has warned that all may not be as it seems.
“The leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood keep declaring, ‘We want peace,’” said Amos Gilad. “I am not so sure.”
Addressing Israeli think-tank the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, Gilad added, “All these developments, we will need to look at them very carefully. Because they can declare they are committed to peace but they can find excuses to undermine it.”
The Brotherhood has a history of criticizing Israel’s relations with Palestine, going so far as to expel its ambassador from Israel last month. In a speech last week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed rising concerns that Egypt was moving away from its relationship with the Jewish state, saying, “The Muslim Brothers will not show mercy to us, they will not give way to us, but I hope they will keep the peace in Egypt.”
He added: “It is important for us, but I think it is also important for Egypt.”