Brace for trouble. The EU peace initiative is about to kick off

By Emanuele Ottolenghi, April 7, 2011

This spring of 2011 does not appear to be the best moment for a new peace initiative. After all, peace talks have not been seriously conducted for two years now.


Concern for Israel as new Egypt emerges

By Anshel Pfeffer, April 7, 2011

Clouds are continuing to gather over Israel's relations with Egypt following the fall of the Mubarak regime.

On Sunday, in an interview with Egyptian state television, Foreign Minister Nabil Al-Arabi said that while Egypt remains committed to the peace accords it signed with Israel, they did not mean that the two countries should have warm relations.


Former MI6 boss: Muslim Brotherhood 'terrorists at heart'

By Jennifer Lipman, March 30, 2011

The former head of the MI6 has described the Muslim Brotherhood as being "at heart, a terrorist organisation".

Speaking at a conference on British-Israeli diplomatic relations at Chatham House, Sir Richard Dearlove also said that Hamas and Hizbollah were "Iranian surrogates".

He warned that it was necessary to "do everything you can to prevent Iran from becoming nuclear".


Five years in jail for Cairo synagogue bomber

By Jennifer Lipman, March 23, 2011

A man who attempted to blow up a Cairo synagogue has been sentenced to five years in prison.

Gamal Hussein tried to bomb the Shaar Hashamayim synagogue, a historic building in downtown Cairo.

In February 2010 he threw a suitcase full of explosives across from a hotel room, but the plan failed when the suitcase caught fire but fell short of the synagogue itself.


The Muslim Brotherhood is unlikely to win out

By Nathalie Tocci, March 10, 2011

The revolts sweeping the Middle East have shaken long-held truths about the region. True, Middle Eastern regimes had been remarkably resilient, remoulding their neo-authoritarian practices to the prerogatives of a globalised world. True also, despite its liberal rhetoric, the West sustained these regimes, viewing them as the lesser evil in a region supposedly plagued by religious extremism.


Meet the new neighbours (and say a little prayer)

By Anshel Pfeffer, March 10, 2011

Egypt's appointment of a foreign minister known for his hostile views is causing ripples of concern across the Israeli political establishment.

On Monday caretaker Prime Minister Issam Sharraf appointed Nabil Al-Arabi as Egyptian foreign minister, in place of Ahmed Aboul Gheit.


Foreign Office minister in Egypt to talk Israel, democracy

By Jennifer Lipman, March 9, 2011

The British foreign office minister for the Middle East is to discuss the direction of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process with the new generation of Egyptian political leaders.


The peace will hold, says Anwar Sadat's widow

By Brigit Grant, March 3, 2011

It is the photograph that means more to Anwar Sadat's widow than any other. A family portrait taken on the eve of the former Egyptian president's departure to Israel to address the Knesset on November 19 1977. A landmark moment for the Middle East, and for his wife who was convinced she would never see him again.


Egyptian troops back in Sinai, three decades on

By Nathan Jeffay, February 24, 2011

The unrest and subsequent ousting of President Hosni Mubarak in Egypt is already proving a game-changer in terms of the Egypt-Israel peace agreement.


As Egypt convulses, Iran slips through Suez

By Anshel Pfeffer, February 24, 2011

Iran tried this week to divert attention from the growing unrest within its cities by sending two warships through the Suez Canal for the first time in over three decades.