U.K., Germany Condemn Attack on Israeli Embassy in Cairo

U.K. PM and Germany FM call on Egypt to uphold responsibilities under international law to protect Israeli diplomats in Egypt and resolve tensions.

British and German officials condemned on Saturday the attack of the Israeli Embassy, calling on the Egyptian government to uphold its responsibilities under international law and protect Israeli diplomats.

Protesters broke into the Israeli Embassy late Friday, dumping hundreds of documents out of its windows after a day of demonstrations. Protesters used sledge hammers and their bare hands to tear apart the embassy's security wall.

“I strongly condemn the attack on the Israeli Embassy in Cairo,” U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron said on Saturday, urging the Egyptian authorities “to meet their responsibilities under the Vienna Convention to protect diplomatic property and personnel, including the Israeli Embassy in Cairo.”

The British prime minister said that the Egyptian authorities had reassured him that they are taking their responsibility to rectify the situation “very seriously”.

Cameron continued, saying “the Egyptian authorities have previously said that they will uphold Egypt’s international agreements including its peace treaty with Israel. We welcome this and look to Egypt to honour this commitment. We urge both countries to work together to resolve current tensions and enhance regional stability”.

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle called on the Egyptian government to provide the necessary protection to the Israeli Embassy in accordance with its international obligations. Westerwelle implored them to do everything in its power to prevent additional escalation in the situation.

U.S. President Barak Obama spoke with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday to discuss the attack on Israel’s embassy in Cairo. The U.S. president's office issued a statement in which Obama expressed great concern over the attack and for the Israelis stationed there.

The statement said that Obama "reviewed the steps that the United States is taking at all levels to help resolve the situation without further violence, and calls on the Government of Egypt to honor its international obligations to safeguard the security of the Israeli Embassy."

Obama and Netanyahu agreed to stay in close touch until the situation is resolved.

Calls to end the historic 1979 peace agreement between Israel and Egypt, a pact that has never been widely supported by Egypt’s constituency, have been on the rise since the fall of Hosni Mubarak in February. Tensions rose last month after Israeli forces responding to a cross-border militant attack mistakenly killed five Egyptian police officers.

Israeli embassy, Cairo - 9.9.11 - Reuters