Livni: Internal politics won’t affect negotiations

Tzipi Livni said Israel will work to close a peace deal with the Palestinians this year, no matter who is prime minister.

Israel’s foreign minister, who spoke with reporters Thursday after a meeting in New York with U>N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, said internal politics would not change the country’s agenda.

“The fact that there are internal changes does not change the fact that a threat exists,” said Livni, who is the lead negotiator in talks with the Palestinians. “It doesn’t change the interests of Israel that we are obligated to represent.”

She called on Israel’s political parties to unite under the centrist Kadima Party to promote security and the peace process.

Also Thursday, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said during a news conference in Tunisia that he would negotiate with the new Kadima leadership or any elected Israeli prime minister.

But Syrian’s ambassador to the United Nations, Bashar Ja’afari, said Wednesday night that Olmert’s resignation could harm talks between Israel and Syria, which are being negotiated by Turkey, Reuters reported.

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