The Daily News Egypt
Constitutional court annuls all previous legal decisions concerning sovereignty of Red Sea islands
Egypt’s Supreme Constitutional Court issued on Saturday its final decision concerning the Tiran and Sanafir islands case, ordering the annulment of all previous verdicts, according to local news outlets.
Two verdicts were annulled: the Urgent Matters Court decision to confirm the agreement and the High Administrate Court verdict to refuse the agreement.
The two islands sit at a strategic location at the southern tip of the Gulf of Aqaba, controlling maritime movement through the gulf.
Egypt and Saudi Arabia had signed an agreement demarcating maritime borders between the two countries in April 2016. It was approved by the Egyptian cabinet in December 2016 and transferred sovereignty of the islands to Saudi Arabia.
The State Lawsuits Authority provided documents and official letters between Saudi Arabian and Egyptian senior officials from the 1950s showing the former asking Egypt to “occupy” the islands in order to secure them “until the region is stable.”
In June 2016, the State Council annulled the agreement, having determined that the Red Sea islands are Egyptian. Within a few hours of that decision, the state appealed it.