- Title: LUXEMBOURG: FM Livni says Israel ready to work with Abbas cabinet
- Date: 19th June 2007
- Summary: (W3) LUXEMBOURG, LUXEMBOURG (JUNE 18, 2007)(REUTERS) ISRAELI FOREIGN MINISTER TZIPI LIVNI ARRIVING FOR MEETING (SOUNDBITE)(English) TZIPI LIVNI, ISRAELI FOREIGN MINISTER, SAYING: ''I believe that this is a moment of truth and this is a moment of decision for those who support the idea of two states solution as a goal, for those who support the values, values that Israel and the international community share, the camp of moderates... And this is a moment of truth also to the Palestinian society. The situation in Gaza Strip revealed the nature of Hamas not only as a terrorist organisation but as an organisation which is based on extreme ideology. It revealed its nature even when it comes to cruelty to its own people, and there is a need for decision. And decision was made by Mahmoud Abbas, the President of the Palestinian Authority, a new government was created and of course when it comes to the Israeli-Palestinian Authority, even though the situation in Gaza deteriorates and this sends... and the message is a message, a very problematic message for the future of the Palestinians as well as to the relations between Israel and the Palestinians, the creation of the new government sends a message of hope. And as Israel said before these events, we are willing to work with those who support the goal of the two states solution, those who understand and accept the right for Israel to exist, and with this kind of government, Israel will work with and of course release the money.'' PHOTOGRAPHERS TAKING PICTURES OF LIVNI ARRIVING FOR MEETING WITH EU FOREIGN POLICY CHIEF JAVIER SOLANA LIVNI SHAKING HANDS WITH SOLANA LIVNI AND SOLANA POSING FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS SOLANA LIVNI OFFICIALS ARRIVING
- Embargoed: 4th July 2007 13:00
- Location: Luxembourg
- Country: Luxembourg
- Topics: International Relations
- Reuters ID: LVA6SM0UUE9IKSNR7EW86PZ75R8R
- Story Text: Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni arrived in Luxembourg on Monday (June 18) to press European ministers to continue isolating the Palestinian militant Islamist group Hamas .
The European Union said on Monday morning it wants to resume direct aid to the Palestinians to bolster President Mahmoud Abbas's emergency cabinet but is still looking at when it can release funds.
Livni said Israel was ready to work with Abbas' emergency cabinet and to release frozen tax revenues.
Livni told reporters the creation of the new government sent a message of hope and Israel was willing to work with those who accepted Israel's right to exist.
Abbas seeks peace with Israel. Hamas has rejected Western demands to recognize the Jewish state and renounce violence.
''The creation of the new government sends a message of hope. And as Israel said before these events, we are willing to work with those who support the goal of the two states solution, those who understand and accept the right for Israel to exist, and with this kind of government, Israel will work with and of course release the money,'' Livni told reporters on her way to meeting with EU Foreign Policy Chief Javier Solana.
Speaking in New York on Sunday (June 17), Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said that Israel would "take perhaps more risks" in cooperating with Abbas's government.
Washington wants to accelerate talks between Olmert and Abbas on Palestinian statehood in the West Bank, while isolating Hamas economically, diplomatically and militarily in Gaza.
Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip after routing forces loyal to Abbas last week, prompting the president to replace the Hamas-led Palestinian unity government with an emergency cabinet.
Hamas rejected the appointment of the new government as a "coup".
The collapse of Abbas's unity government with Hamas has prompted Olmert to say Israel would release frozen tax revenues and led the Bush administration to declare it will to lift a ban on direct aid this week.
Western powers imposed the aid embargo because Hamas, which won parliamentary elections last year, failed to recognise Israel, renounce violence and accept interim peace deals. Hamas secured alternative support from Israel's arch-foe Iran.
When the EU suspended direct aid, nearly half a total annual 500 million euros of transfers were flowing through national and local authorities, while much of the rest required government involvement. Despite the embargo, it says it has increased humanitarian aid to the most needy Palestinians.
Diplomats said EU foreign ministers would take no definitive decision to end the direct aid embargo in Luxembourg, and instead signal they would study "further practical and financial support" for Abbas.
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