Mon July 16, 2012 8:01pm
ISRAEL and the US must think and act together to face the changes sweeping the Middle East, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said after meeting Israeli President Shimon Peres.
Clinton, who arrived in Jerusalem on Sunday after two days of talks with the new leadership in Egypt, hailed a "moment of great change and transformation in the region".
"It is a time of uncertainty but also of opportunity, it is a chance to advance our shared goals of security, stability, peace and democracy," she said on Monday in remarks to the press after talks with Peres focusing on Egypt, Syria, Iran's nuclear program and peace efforts with the Palestinians.
"It is in moments like these that friends like us have to think together, act together."
On the last leg of a 13-day, nine-nation tour, Clinton on Monday met with her Israeli counterpart Avigdor Lieberman before her talks with Peres, briefing both on her discussions in Cairo with newly elected President Mohamed Morsi and military leader Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi.
Peres thanked Clinton for her efforts to shore up the peace between Israel and the new Egyptian leadership.
"We appreciate very much that immediately after Egypt, you came to us with your latest impressions because, for us, as well as for the United States, Egypt is a key country in the Middle East and much depends on Egypt and a little bit on us as well, to continue the great march of peace," he said.
"Israel is very much interested in keeping the peace with the largest Arab country."
Ahead of her arrival, a top US State Department official said Washington's top diplomat wanted to have "a broader strategic conversation" with the Israelis following the sweeping changes across the region.