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Egyptian peace negotiator

Mustafa Khalil, a former Egyptian prime minister who was an architect of the 1979 Camp David peace treaty between Egypt and Israel, died late Saturday in a Cairo hospital where he was being treated for an unspecified illness, said the Egyptian state news agency, MENA.

Mr. Khalil, as former secretary-general of the ruling Arab Socialist Union party, accompanied Egyptian President Anwar Sadat on his historic visit to Jerusalem in November 1977. The visit paved the way for the negotiations mediated by President Jimmy Carter.

Mr. Khalil, who was prime minister from 1978 to 1980, then headed the Egyptian team in negotiations with the Israelis at Camp David, which ended with the 1979 peace deal, the first between an Arab nation and Israel.

"Khalil contributed in serving the country for over 50 years and took part in making peace and building the basis of development," former U.N. Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali told MENA. "We continued negotiations together that ended in the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty that launched the peace process in the region.

Mr. Boutros-Ghali, as deputy prime minister for foreign affairs, also went with Mr. Sadat on the Jerusalem trip and participated in the negotiations.


Master of the Italian comedy

Director Dino Risi, an Oscar-nominated master of the Italian comedy who combined a light touch with a merciless look at the flaws of his compatriots, died Saturday in his Rome apartment, officials said.

Mr. Risi was acclaimed as a father of the Italian comedy for his ability to mix the funny with the tragic.

His comedies were ferocious satires of the habits and flaws of Italians, often featuring unflattering characters such as the superficial charlatan, the cheating husband and the immoral father. But the chilling, sometimes tragic, endings of some of his movies showed depth and moral rigor behind the laughs.

"I feel a great pain for his death. His movies were beautiful and funny," said actress Sophia Loren.

"With Dino Risi's death, Italy loses a noble and vital father of its cinema and its culture," Rome Mayor Gianni Alemanno said in a statement.

During a career that spanned decades, Mr. Risi worked with some of the finest Italian actors, including Ms. Loren, Vittorio Gassman and Alberto Sordi.

His hits include Poveri ma belli (Poor But Beautiful) in 1957 and Il Sorpasso (The Easy Life) in 1962, starring Mr. Gassman and Jean-Louis Trintignant as an improbable pair traveling toward a tragic end during an Italian summer.

In 1974, Mr. Risi directed Profumo di Donna (Scent of a Woman), which received Oscar nominations for best foreign language movie and best adapted screenplay. A U.S. remake of the movie starring Al Pacino won Oscars in 1992.

Born in Milan into a middle-class family, Mr. Risi started as a film critic and made documentaries and short movies before moving to feature films. He gained success in the 1950s with Pane, Amore e ... (known as Scandal in Sorrento) starring Vittorio de Sica and Ms. Loren.

His movies in that period and for the next decade captured the transformation of Italian society during and after the economic boom that followed World War II.

In La Marcia su Roma (March on Rome) in 1963, he looked back at the rise of fascism thorough the eyes of two down-and-out men.

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