(March 19, 2023 / JNS) Israeli and Palestinian officials were scheduled to meet in the Egyptian Red Sea resort town of Sharm el-Sheikh on Sunday, amid escalating tensions in the region in the run-up to Ramadan.
Jordan, Egypt and the United States were also to participate in the security summit, which comes nearly a month after a similar summit took place in the Jordanian Red Sea port city of Aqaba.
According to Hebrew media reports, among the participants at the meeting will be Israeli National Security Adviser Tzachi Hanegbi, Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) director Ronen Bar, Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Maj. Gen. Ghassan Alian, among others.
On the Palestinian Authority side will be P.A. Civil Affairs Minister Hussein al-Sheikh, General Intelligence Service head Majed Faraj and P.A. leader Mahmoud Abbas’s political adviser Majdi al-Khalidi.
U.S. President Joe Biden’s senior Middle East adviser Brett McGurk and the foreign ministers of Jordan and Egypt are also scheduled to participate.
At the Aqaba meeting, Israel and the Palestinian Authority affirmed the need to “commit to de-escalation on the ground,” according to Jordan’s Foreign Ministry. Israel also committed to “stop discussion of any new settlement units for four months and to stop authorization of any outposts for six months,” according to the U.S. State Department.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu denied the report, stating on Feb. 26 that “there is not and will not be any freeze.”
Ramadan starts on March 23 and ends on April 21.