Israeli ambassador leaves Cairo ahead of 25 January celebrations

Israeli Ambassador to Egypt Yaakov Amitai left Cairo for Tel Aviv Thursday to spend time with his family and does not plan to return until after 25 January to avoid any potential unrest on the one-year anniversary of the revolution.

Amitai had already decided to take leave this weekend when he assumed his post from former Ambassador Yitzhak Levanon in December. He was accompanied on his Air Sinai flight by eight embassy employees, a security source at Cairo International Airport told DPA news agency.

If celebrations are calm, Amitai will return to work at his Maadi home by the week of 29 January. The Israeli Embassy has been closed since it was raided by protesters in September who were angry over Israel's accidental killing of six Egyptian border police while chasing Palestinian militants across the Egypt-Israel border. The embassy has not yet been relocated.

On Monday, 9 January, 54 political parties and movements called for nationwide protests on 25 January to demand a swift transfer of power from military to civilian authorities.

Islamist political forces announced their participation in the event, including Jama'a al-Islamiya and the Muslim Brotherhood. The Salafi-led Nour Party said it will participate in the celebrations and help provide security if asked.

Translated from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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