The Israeli government plans to request that an Israeli Supreme Court order to dismantle part of a West Bank settlement be postponed for 90 days.
Migron, the largest and most established of the 100 or so illegal Jewish outposts set up across the West Bank, is on the front lines of a looming showdown between the settler movement and the Israeli government. Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon recently pledged to dismantle such settlements in accordance with the U.S.-led "road map" peace plan.
Israeli leaders were heartened in late December, when Egypt's foreign minister announced that he would come to Jerusalem for talks on promoting Israeli-Palestinian peace.
At the same time, however, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was moving in Cairo to galvanize international pressure on Israel to dismantle the nuclear weapons it is presumed to possess.Â
These seemingly contradictory thrusts in Egyptian policy highlight the deep ambivalence that has characterized Egypt's attitude to Israel since the two countries made peace in 1979.