Middle East

Egypt president backs French proposal for Mideast talks

  • FILE -- In this April 20, 2016 file photo, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, listens to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry during their meeting at the Presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt. President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi said Tuesday that Egypt’s relations with Israel, rooted in a landmark 1979 peace treaty, can only be “warmer” if his country’s former enemy reached a settlement with the Palestinians and pledged to “make every effort” toward a solution. . (AP Photo/Amr Nabil, Pool, File)

    FILE -- In this April 20, 2016 file photo, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, listens to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry during their meeting at the Presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt. President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi said Tuesday that Egypt’s relations with Israel, rooted in a landmark 1979 peace treaty, can only be “warmer” if his country’s former enemy reached a settlement with the Palestinians and pledged to “make every effort” toward a solution. . (AP Photo/Amr Nabil, Pool, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Sunday, May 15, 2016, file photo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu heads the weekly cabinet meeting at the Prime Minister's office in Jerusalem. Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi said Tuesday that Egypt’s relations with Israel, rooted in a landmark 1979 peace treaty, can only be “warmer” if his country’s former enemy reached a settlement with the Palestinians and pledged to “make every effort” toward a solution. (Gali Tibbon/Pool Photo via AP, File)

    FILE - In this Sunday, May 15, 2016, file photo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu heads the weekly cabinet meeting at the Prime Minister's office in Jerusalem. Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi said Tuesday that Egypt’s relations with Israel, rooted in a landmark 1979 peace treaty, can only be “warmer” if his country’s former enemy reached a settlement with the Palestinians and pledged to “make every effort” toward a solution. (Gali Tibbon/Pool Photo via AP, File)  (The Associated Press)

Egypt's president has declared his support for a French proposal to hold a Mideast peace conference later this year.

Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi on Tuesday also called on Israel and the Palestinians to seize what he described as a "realistic" and "great" opportunity to reach a peaceful settlement to their decades-old conflict.

The Egyptian president says the Israelis and Palestinians need look no farther than the 1979 Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty to see the positive outcome of peacemaking.

He says the amount of animosity between Egypt and Israel that had existed prior to the conclusion of the landmark accord was no different from how the Palestinians and Israelis feel now.

El-Sissi says Egypt is prepared to "make every effort" to contribute to an Israeli-Palestinian settlement.