Israeli Embassy crew leaves Cairo after short visit

Staffers at the Israeli Embassy in Cairo left Egypt on Tuesday to Israel via Jordan, following a short visit that lasted for a few hours.

The diplomats, who arrived in Cairo on Monday afternoon, ran some embassy affairs and checked out some alternative locations for the facility, preparing to move from the current site, which had been ransacked earlier this month by angry Egyptian protesters.

Informed sources at Cairo International Airport said the delegation included Israeli general consul Yaakov Dvir and four others.

This is the second visit by Israeli Embassy diplomats since protesters broke into the building housing the embassy.

Sources said Ambassador Yitzhak Levanon has left for Israel for the Jewish High Holidays, adding that he said he will not return before the situation in Egypt stabilizes, especially with his term nearing its end in October.

Relations between Cairo and Tel Aviv have been deteriorating since the death of six Egyptian officers in an Israeli border raid late August.

The incident sparked a public uproar in Egypt and provoked calls to expel the Israeli ambassador and cancel the peace treaty signed between both states in 1979.

Israel claimed the killings were a mistake during a search for perpetrators behind an earlier attack near the southern city of Eilat, which had killed eight Israelis. Days later, angry Egyptian protesters tore down the Israeli flag from the nation's embassy in Cairo.

On 9 September, protesters pulled down a concrete wall Egyptian authorities had erected to protect the embassy, before raiding the embassy’s archives and throwing documents out of its windows. The Israeli ambassador had left the embassy before the break-in, while Egyptian commandos managed to rescue other diplomatic staff.

Clashes between security forces and protesters near the embassy had left three dead and hundreds injured.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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