Palestinian officials said they hope to promote economic cooperation with Egypt as part of a plan to break away from Israel. This step was translated this week in a visit by a high-level ministerial delegation to Cairo, headed by Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, at the invitation of his Egyptian counterpart Mustafa Madbouli.
Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki said that a meeting between their governments, expected on Wednesday, would pave the way for a new phase and open the door to holding regular meetings between Cairo and Ramallah in the future.
“Our presence in Egypt, in this large size, is a clear message that we are very interested in developing our relations with Cairo,” Maliki said.
The Palestinian delegation includes 12 ministers, including the ministers of foreign affairs, finance, national economy, higher education, public works and housing, health, agriculture, local government, transportation, and telecommunication and information technology. The ministries of interior and endowments, which are headed by the prime minister, will be also represented in the delegation.
Cairo has previously said that the Palestinian delegation’s visit is a reflection of the strategic and fraternal relationship between Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, given the ongoing and constant coordination between them in all central and political issues.
Meanwhile, Maliki handed over Tuesday a legal file on the maritime borders of Palestine to Secretary General of the Arab League, Ahmed Aboul Gheit. A similar file was submitted to the United Nations last month.
"This matter is important because it establishes the legal status of the State of Palestine and enhances its position in the world in terms of demarcation of maritime borders," Maliki told the Palestinian news agency (WAFA) following a meeting with Aboul Gheit at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo.
Discussions addressed Abbas’ speech at the UN General Assembly last month, Palestinian elections and the latest developments in the Palestinian territories.