Egyptian President Anwar Sadat offered an olive branch to Arab critics of his country's recent interim peace agreement with Israel in a nationwide broadcast from the Arab Socialist Union Headquarters in Cairo, Egypt, on Monday (15 September).
SV PAN President Sadat entering hall amidst wild applause (2 shots)
CU and GV PAN Sadat speaks in Arabic.
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Background: Egyptian President Anwar Sadat offered an olive branch to Arab critics of his country's recent interim peace agreement with Israel in a nationwide broadcast from the Arab Socialist Union Headquarters in Cairo, Egypt, on Monday (15 September).
The tone of the two-hour speech, marking the second anniversary of the 1973 Arab-Israeli war, surprised many observers who thought it remarkably conciliator coming just a few hours after Palestinian gunmen had occupied the Egyptian Embassy in Madrid, holding three diplomats hostage.
In a reference to critics of the accord -- they include the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO), Syria and Iraq, -- Mr. Sadat said Egypt was open to criticism, dialogue and understanding.
Mr. Sadat said Egypt once again had to "try and put up with the rash behaviour of some Palestinians" but he did not threaten any action against Palestinians living in Egypt.
The President again attacked the Soviet Union, accusing it of being the driving force behind an anti-Egyptian campaign.
He also accused the Soviet Union of supplying Egypt with primitive and obsolete weapons dating back to World War II.
Mr. Sadat said that he had repeatedly told PLO chief Yasser Arafat -- a leading critic of the accord -- that he was being used as a front by the Soviet Union and Syria.
"I want to tell everyone frankly that Egypt's affairs are strictly the affairs of the people of Egypt," he said. He reiterated the view that his country's accord with Israel was merely one step toward an overall Middle East settlement.
The President said Ara solidarity could not be shaken by what he described as petty manoeuvres against Egypt, and that such moves should be stopped for the sake of "brotherhood and comrades in arms."
Mr. Sadat said Egypt would be going ahead with its policies and that the ammunition of critics would soon be exhausted because it comprised only words.