Egypt inked a deal with Israel on Sunday to increase its security troops at the Rafah border crossing with Gaza, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) stated on Monday.
Senior IDF and Egyptian Armed Forces officials gathered in the Red Sea resort town of Sharm el-Sheik in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula to conduct bilateral discussions.
“During the committee meeting, a revision to an agreement controlling security forces’ presence in the Rafah area was signed in support of strengthening the Egyptian Armed Forces’ security presence in that area. The State Security Cabinet accepted the change,” according to the IDF statement.
The Joint Military Committee was formed as part of the historic peace deal between Israel and Egypt signed at the White House in 1979 and meets on a regular basis to coordinate military and defense matters.
The IDF delegation was led by Maj. Gen. Oded Basiuk, head of the Operations Directorate, Maj. Gen. Tal Kelman, head of the Strategic Planning and Cooperation Directorate, and Brig. Gen. Effie Defrin, head of the International Cooperation Division.
Rafah is Egypt’s sole border crossing with the Palestinian territory.
Since Hamas assumed power in the Gaza Strip in 2007, both Egypt and Israel have maintained a blockade on the territory.
Since Israel’s newly elected government took office this summer, security coordination between the two countries has become more transparent.
Abbas Kamel, Egypt’s intelligence chief, is scheduled to visit Jerusalem at the end of the month, his second trip to the Jewish state since Prime Minister Naftali Bennett entered office.
According to Egyptian sources, the spymaster will give Bennett with a proposal outlining the terms of a prisoner swap agreement reached with Hamas.
Kamel will also convey Egypt’s perspective on the necessary Gaza Strip relief, Kan reported, which was agreed upon by Palestinian factions during their recent visit to Egypt.