Eygptian President Mohammed Morsi has denied sending a warm letter to Israeli President Shimon Peres that expressed a desire for “security and stability for the region including the Israeli people”.
The letter, which was received at the president’s Jerusalem office by fax from the Egyptian Embassy in Tel Aviv, was in response to greetings Mr Peres sent his counterpart two weeks ago for the month of Ramadan.
This is the first contact between Mr Morsi and Israel’s leaders since his election in June.
Yasser Ali, Mr Morsi’s spokesman, said: “What the Israeli newspapers published today is an invention.”
An official at Mr Peres’s office said: “We are not concerned by the denial, it is obviously for internal Egyptian consumption. We received the letter from the Egyptian Embassy here and have verified that it came from Morsi.”