A Nazareth-based publication reported on Thursday that Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni had met with her Syrian counterpart Walid Moallem in New York this week. Livni's camp denied the report.
The Arabic-language weekly publication Al-Sinara reported that Livni and Moallem had met at the New York home of the emir of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani. The publication, which cited Arab diplomatic sources in the United States as the source of the report, said that the emir surprised the two foreign ministers with a proposition to arrange a meeting.
According to the report, Livni received special authorization from Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to meet with the Syrian official. The Israeli and Syrian ambassadors to the United Nations were also present at the meeting, Al-Sinara reported.
The meeting revolved around the urgent need to calm the escalating tensions between Israel and Syria, the report added.
Later Thursday, Moallem also denied the report and said he had not met with Livni in New York.
Livni to Erdogan: Israel probing fuel tanks found in TurkeyOn Wednesday, Livni met with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.
The issue that took center-stage at the meeting was the Israel Air Force strike allegedly carried out on Syria on September 6, which Turkey complained left two fuel tanks on its territory.
Erdogan asked Livni for clarification on the tanks found next to the city of Hatay, near the Syrian border. Livni told Erdogan that "an investigation on the matter is still taking place," and that "at the end of the investigation, we will answer all questions."
After the incident, Israel's envoy to Ankara was summoned to the Turkish Foreign Ministry and given a diplomatic protest regarding the alleged IAF flyover of Syrian air space.
Livni meets with Tunisian FM for talks on peace process with PA
Livni also met Wednesday with her Tunisian counterpart Abdelwaheb Abdullah at the United Nations headquarters, in what was the first meeting between Israeli and Tunisian officials since then foreign minister Silvan Shalom visited Tunisia approximately three years ago.
The meeting was held at Livni's request, despite the fact that the countries do not have diplomatic relations. The two foreign ministers discussed the negotiations with the Palestinians.
Livni stressed the importance of moderate Arab states providing support for and getting involved in the peace process, including through direct negotiations with Israel.
The foreign minister is also scheduled to meet with her Moroccan counterpart Mohammed Ben Aissa.
Earlier Wednesday, Livni hosted the representatives of 20 African states for breakfast. Among those present was the South African deputy foreign minister, whose country holds a seat on the UN Security Council. The South African envoy to the UN has spearheaded a hostile policy towards Israel in debates on the Middle East.
Livni briefed the participants on the recent developments in relations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, including preparations for November's U.S.-sponsored Middle East peace summit in Washington, D.C.
Later Livni met with Republican presidential candidate and former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani for talks that focused on the Iranian nuclear program.
Giuliani said that, if he were still mayor of New York, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would not have been granted such free access to the city and such prominent exposure.
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