Egypt Cancels Natural Gas Agreement with Israel

Historically, Egypt and Israel have been allies since they signed a peace treaty in 1979.  However, the relationship has become tenuous  since the Arab Spring, during which Egypt’s pro-Israeli dictator was removed.  Now, Egypt has terminated its contract to supply natural gas to Israel.  The joint venture was at one time held up as a model of peace and friendship.  Israel’s Finance Minister stated that he is greatly worried about the termination and that it sets a “dangerous precedent that darkens the peace treaties and the atmosphere of peace between Israel and Egypt.”

One Israeli official noted that this might be the straw that broke the camels back.  Many believe that the new Egyptian government is hostile to Israel.  Up until this year, Egypt had provided Israel with about 40% of its natural gas.   Although the natural gas company was privately owned, the deal could nave been stopped without government approval.  Many Egyptian’s believed that the Natural Gas deal with Israel was a symbol of corruption of the old regime, and that and that Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was stealing profits.

Egyptian officials claim that the matter is commercial and not political.  They say that politics was not involved.  Nevertheless, its hard to look at what happens and not see politics on both sides.

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