Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak expressed deep concern on today after early results in Egypt's post-revolution election showed Islamists sweeping to victory.

"The process of Islamisation in Arab countries is very worrying," Barak told Israel's private Channel Two television.

But he added, however, that it was "premature to say how these changes will affect the region."

Partial figures that trickled Saturday in Egypt confirmed earlier predictions that Islamist parties, including hardline Salafists, would win at least two thirds of the ballots cast.

The Muslim Brotherhood, expected to win 40 percent of votes in the first phase of Egypt's post-revolution election, stressed Saturday it was a moderate force, not to be confused with hardliners.

Egyptian voted on Monday and Tuesday in the first part of a parliamentary election that is taking place in three stages.

"I hope that any government that will be formed in Egypt will have no other choice but to respect its international commitments including the (1979) peace treaty with Israel," Barak said.

He also stressed that Egypt should bolster control of the Sinai peninsula where saboteurs on Monday blew up a pipeline that supplies gas to Israel and Jordan.

The attack was the ninth of its kind this year. The first one took place during the mass uprisings that drove Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak from power in February.

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