Netanyahu and Egypt's Sissi Shook Hands in Paris for the First Time

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Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi.Credit: AP

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi shook hands during the climate conferencein in Paris earlier this week, a senior official in the Prime Minister's Office told Haaretz Thursday.

The handshake took place as world leaders posed for a group photo on Monday. This was the first face-to-face meeting between the two leaders since Sissi took office in 2014.

Despite the fact that the security ties between Israel and Egypt have been growing stronger since the Muslim Brotherhood regime was ousted, the diplomatic relations between the two nations have remained cool. Netanyahu and Sissi have only held a few telephone conference calls, primarily during crises, including the 2014 Israel–Gaza conflict and the tensions over the Temple Mount.

The senior official also said that Netanyahu shook hands with King Abdullah II of Jordan during the Paris conference. The two haven't met since November 2014, and the king has been avoiding taking Netanyahu's phone calls over the past few months amid tensions over the Temple Mount.

The photo opportunity was also the first time since September 2010 that Netanyahu met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. The two leaders were placed in the same row, with only New Zealand Prime Minister John Key standing in between them. After the group photo, they shook hands and exchanged a few words.

Netanyahu talks with Abbas during a group photo at the Paris climate change summit, November 30, 2015.Credit: AP

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