Israel’s prime minister has ordered silence on anti-government protests in neighbouring Egypt but security officials say they worry the violence could threaten ties and spread to the Palestinian Authority.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, the two officials said Prime Minister Netanyahu had told all government spokesmen not to comment.

The security officials said they are worried that a regime change could threaten Israeli-Egyptian relations and that violence could spread to the Palestinian Authority.

Egypt was the first Arab country to reach peace with Israel three decades ago. It is one of Israel’s most important allies by acting as a bridge to the wider Arab world.

Egyptians have taken to the streets en masse calling on President Hosni Mubarak to resign after nearly 30 years in power.

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