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Israeli energy minister on rare visit to Egypt

AFP  |  Cairo 

Israel's arrived in on Sunday to attend a conference in a rare visit to by an Israeli official, airport sources said.

and are the only two Arab states to have full diplomatic ties with Israel, but the relations remain limited and taboo among the general populations.

Egyptians, like most Arabs, are largely opposed to the normalisation of ties with in the absence of any resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Steinitz's visit came at the invitation of the Egyptian government, Israel's ministry said.

The Israeli was set to attend a regional forum on natural gas, which has become a major economic and strategic issue in the

The "development of has geopolitical and geostrategic value," told ahead of the trip.

"Here you have for the first time real economic cooperation between the axis-of-peace states Israel, and Jordan, along with European countries." Egypt has increased its meetings and agreements on with neighbouring countries as of late.

In February 2018, reached a deal with for the transfer of from Israel's Tamar and Leviathan reservoirs to Egypt.

"Steinitz's invitation to the conference in Egypt is the positive outcome of the gas agreement," a source close to told AFP.

The last time an Israeli minister visited Egypt was in November 2017 when took part in a conference on the promotion of gender equality in states.

Relations between and some Arab countries have warmed in recent months, with Israeli ministers last year visiting the and

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, January 13 2019. 22:00 IST