Peres to Morsi: 'Peace is the victory of both sides'

Mohammed Morsi

Mohammed Morsi

Israel's leaders have written to the newly elected Egyptian President appealing for him to maintain the peace treaty between the two countries.

Mohammed Morsi, who represents the once-banned Muslim Brotherhood Party, claimed victory in the runoff election last week and was sworn in on Saturday.

The triumph of the Islamist Party has prompted fears in Israel that Egypt will move itself away from the treaty with Israel, signed at Camp David more than 30 years ago.

Shimon Peres, in a letter to Mr Morsi, noted that peace had saved the lives "of countless young people in Egypt and in Israel". He said: "Unlike war, peace is the victory of both sides."

The Israeli President told his counterpart that he hoped "for continued cooperation with you, based upon the peace accords signed between us more than three decades ago and which we are committed to preserve and develop for future generations of both our people".

He also wrote of the respect felt by Israelis "for Egypt and for the Egyptian people for serving as pioneers and leading the route to peace and reconciliation in the region.

"Here in Israel, we congratulate you for holding democratic elections and wish Egypt under your presidency success in managing the complex challenges facing the Egyptian nation."

Mr Netanyahu's letter was not published but according to an Israeli official, it "stressed Israel's desire to continue cooperation and to strengthen the peace".

Last updated: 12:04pm, July 2 2012