Hillary Clinton Meets With Israeli Leaders Following Meetings In Egypt
Clinton met with Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman and President Shimon Peres. The most pressing issue of the meeting was probably Iran’s nuclear program, The Washington Post reported.
The newspaper reported that Peres issued a statement after the meeting that denounced the escalating violence in Syria and stressed the importance of maintaining a peace treaty between Israel and Egypt.
Israel is the last stop on one of her longest trips as secretary of state, and follows a weekend of meetings in Egypt.
Her visit to Egypt was met with vocal protesters.
Clinton was met by several thousands of shouting protesters when she arrived at the Four Seasons Hotel in Cairo Saturday, many of them supporters of ousted president Hosni Mubarak, The Washington Post reported.
On Sunday, she was met by several hundreds of protesters in Alexandria at the reopening of the U.S. Consulate. Protesters threw tomatoes and shoes at her motorcade, shouting “Monica, Monica,” in reference to Monica Lewinsky, the White House intern her husband, former President Bill Clinton, had an affair with. Throwing shoes is a demeaning insult in Arab culture.
Clinton said she was in Alexandria to answer critics who believe Washington has taken sides in Egyptian politics, CNN reported.
“I want to be clear that the United States is not in the business, in Egypt, of choosing winners and losers, even if we could, which, of course, we cannot,” she said at the consulate ceremony. “I have come to Alexandria to reaffirm the strong support of the United States for the Egyptian people and for their democratic future.”
The consulate had been closed in 1993 due to budget constraints, according to CNN.
Clinton met with the new President Mohamed Morsi on Saturday, urging him to assert the “full authority” of his office, CNN reported. She said it is up to the Egyptian people to shape the country’s political future, but the U.S. would work to “support the military’s return to a purely national security role.”
She met with the head of Egypt’s military leadership, Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, on Sunday. They discussed the political transition and the military ruling council’s dialogue with Morsi, CNN reported, in a meeting that lasted about an hour.
After two days of meetings in Egypt, the secretary of state left the country Sunday night. Following meetings with Israeli leaders in the morning, she met with Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad Monday afternoon. She is also scheduled to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
The Washington Post reported that Clinton’s stop in Jerusalem is the last during this trip that began July 5 and included stops in Japan, Mongolia, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. The trip has focused on the Obama administration’s policy “pivot” to Asia.