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Egypt denies Morsi sent letter to Peres


Egypt has denied reports saying President Mohamed Morsi sent his Israeli counterpart Shimon Peres a letter in which he expressed his hope for regional peace.

"There is no truth to these (reports). President Morsi did not send any letter to the Israeli president," Presidential spokesman Yasser Ali said Tuesday evening. "Everything that was published by the Israeli media is unfounded fabrications."

Peres' office published the letter's content earlier in the day, along with a copy of the missive. Officials at the President's Residence said the Egyptians' reaction was expected in light of the interest the letter has generated.

The officials said that at around noon the Egyptian ambassador informed his military secretary that Morsi had sent the letter.

It is possible that Morsi's aides feared the letter's publication would hurt the president's political standing. Morsi, a Muslim Brotherhood member, is a staunch critic of Israel and has recently met with Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and the terror group's politburo chief Khaled Mashaal.

In the letter, Egypt's Islamist leader said he is "looking forward to exerting our best efforts to get the Middle East process back on its track in order to achieve security and stability."

Peres' office said the letter came as a response to a missive the Israeli president sent Morsi after the latter was declared the winner of Egypt's first democratic elections.

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