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Israel denies sending riot gear to Egypt

JTA

January 31, 2011 | 10:35 am

Israel has denied an Al Jazeera report that Egypt had requested Israel to send riot-dispersal gear and that two airplanes had landed in Cairo with the equipment.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry on Monday denied both that Egypt had made the request and that Israel had sent the equipment.

Some 250,000 protesters gathered Monday in Tahrir Square in Cairo as Egypt entered its seventh day of protests against the government of President Hosni Mubarak.

Also Monday, two filled El Al flights left Cairo filled with Israelis who wanted to leave the country. The United States was scheduled to begin evacuating its citizens from Egypt on Monday, offering voluntary flights to Europe.

Egyptian opposition leaders are calling for a million people to march through Cairo on Tuesday in an effort to convince Mubarak, who has been in power for three decades, to step down.

Meanwhile, Mubarak on Monday reportedly ordered his new government to begin talks with the opposition that which has been backing the uprising against him. Approximately 100 people have been killed in the revolt and thousands have been arrested.

The Israeli daily Haaretz reported Monday that Israel has called on the United States and several European countries to control its criticism of Mubarak in order to maintain the stability of the Egyptian regime and in the region.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday ordered his government ministers not to comment publicly on the issue.

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