Minister: Israel OK with Egypt's change

Feb. 13, 2011 at 1:20 PM

WASHINGTON, Feb. 13 (UPI) -- The Israeli government is comfortable with the political change that shook Egypt for 18 days, Defense Minister Ehud Barak told ABC's "This Week" Sunday.

In an interview taped after Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak abandoned office after 30 years amid national protests, Barak said Israel wasn't alarmed.

"I don't think that the relationship between Israel and Egypt is under any risk or that any kind of operational risk is waiting us just behind the corner," he said.

Asked about earlier concerns Barak expressed about the fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood party's role in the unrest, the minister said intelligence sources indicated it was purely a populist situation.

"It was not something that was organized by extremist groups of Muslim radical origins," he said. "But they are always deployed to take advantage of it."

Sunday, Egypt's temporary military government announced it had dissolved Parliament and the country would have national elections within six months.

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