19-09-2021 08:56 AM Jerusalem Timing

Egyptians Escalate Movement against Israeli Embassy, Detain Officials

Egyptians Escalate Movement against Israeli Embassy, Detain Officials

Egyptian protestors attacked the Israeli embassy, took off the Israeli flag and raised the Egyptian flag, and tossed official documents, including “confidential” ones, into the rallying crowds.

Egyptian protestors attacked and invaded the Israeli embassy in Cairo Friday night, took off the Israeli flag and raised the Egyptian flag instead, and tossed official papers and documents, including “confidential” ones, through the windows into the massive crowds rallying near the building.

The protestors were able to accomplish this step after having destroyed a wall built around the building of the embassy.

After that, they surrounded and detained six of the embassy security men, who were saved by the Egyptian commandos.

18 people were martyred and 450 others were injured during the protests after the Egyptian police confronted and attacked the protestors' movement, and used tear bombs to separate them.

Egyptian Interior Minister declared a state of high alert, and cancelled all police leave, while Prime Minister Essam Sharaf called for an emergency cabinet meeting Saturday.

The official Egyptian News Agency Al-Sharq Al-Awsat reported that the protestors successfully took control over “confidential” documents that belong to the Israeli apparatuses, and claimed that the “documents included letters from Israeli employees to their Egyptian counterparts written in Arabic but have Israeli stamps.”

One of the activists told Al-Manar TV Channel that some of the documents included information about the Israeli spy in Egypt Azzam Azzam whom ousted President Hosni Moubarak ordered his release four years ago.

Furthermore, the 25 January revolution coalition stated that the protestors have detained three of the Israeli embassy employees, and moved them to a “safer” place.

The coalition coordinator Houssam Al-Din Ammar told Al-Manar that the three officials were the Israeli ambassador’s secretary, and two communication and protocol officials in the embassy.

He also said that high-ranked officials have called him personally asking for the release of the Israeli detainees, but he demanded the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador and all the embassy staff, and the summoning of the Egyptian ambassador in Israel before any release, and put a time frame of three hours to do so.

Media reports revealed Saturday that Higher Chief of the Armed forces Hussein Tantawi began personally negotiating with the protestors to release the detainees, but the revolution coalition put the mentioned conditions and warned that if they were not implemented, they will intensify their movement.

The Israeli ambassador in Cairo Yitzhak Levanon reportedly left Egypt Saturday, leaving behind his senior diplomat to resume the embassy’s work.

AFP quoted an Israeli official as saying that "we left the deputy ambassador to keep up contact with the Egyptian government."

For his part, US President Barack Obama expressed his “great concern” of the rising situation to Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, and demanded the Egyptian authorities to “protect” the Israeli embassy; while Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak requested US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to help protecting the embassy in Cairo.

Obama’s office issued a statement indicating that Obama has “reviewed the steps that the United States is taking at all levels to help resolve the situation without further violence, and to call on the Government of Egypt to honor its international obligations to safeguard the security of the Israeli Embassy."