Egypt Withdraws Ambassador to Israel Over Policemen Deaths

Interim government to take protective measures and strengthen security at the border in order to deter alleged infiltrators.

Egypt will withdraw its ambassador to Israel until it receives an apology and the results of an official investigation into the killing of five Egyptian policemen near the border, the cabinet said Saturday.

An emergency committee said the ambassador would be recalled until "Israeli authorities apologize for the hasty and regrettable statements about Egypt."

Egypt Isarel Border - Alon Ron - 13112011
Alon Ron

It said Egypt also held Israel responsible for political and legal implications of the incident, which it called a violation of the Camp David Treaty.

Egypt will also take protective measures and strengthen security at the border with the necessary forces capable of deterring alleged infiltrators as well as respond to any activity by the Israeli military, it added.

On Friday, the government protested to Israel over the killing of five policemen on the border and demanded an "urgent investigation into the causes and circumstances of the incident.

The policemen were patrolling in the Egyptian region of Sinai when they came under fire from across the border, sources at the interior ministry said.

Hundreds of Egyptians protested outside the Israeli embassy in Cairo on Friday demanding the expulsion of the ambassador.

Ousted president Hosni Mubarak was viewed by many Egyptians as taking a lenient stance toward Israel.

Tensions have mounted along the borders with Israel and the Gaza Strip after deadly attacks in southern Israel on Thursday.