Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton meet the Israeli and Palestinian leaders as well as officials of the new Egyptian government.
The U.S. State Department on Thursday announced an extensive July 5-16 itinerary for Clinton that will include stops in France, Japan, Mongolia, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Egypt and Israel.
A State Dept. press release reads:
“In Paris on July 6, Secretary Clinton will attend the third meeting of the Friends of the Syrian People. At that meeting, the Secretary will consult with her colleagues on steps to increase pressure on the Assad regime and to support UN-Arab League Special Envoy Annan’s efforts to end the violence and facilitate a political transition to a post-Assad Syria. Secretary Clinton will consult with French leaders regarding next steps on Syria as well as on a number of other key areas of global concern.
“As part of her ongoing consultations with senior Palestinian and Israeli leaders, the Secretary will also meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to discuss both parties’ efforts to pursue a dialogue and build on President Abbas’ exchange of letters with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.”
After her swing through the Far East, Clinton will arrive in Egypt:
“On July 14, Secretary Clinton will travel to Egypt to express the United States’ support for Egypt’s democratic transition and economic development. From July 15-16, she will meet with senior government officials, civil society, and business leaders, and inaugurate the U.S. Consulate General in Alexandria.”
It was not clear from the statement whether she would be meeting with Morsi himself.
The Obama and Netanyahu governments have sent out feelers to Morsi, who was backed by the Islamist party Muslim Brotherhood, to assess his support for upholding the 33-year-old Israeli-Egyptian peace.
“This will be followed by a stop in Israel on July 16-17, where she will be meeting with the Israeli leadership to discuss peace efforts and a range of regional and bilateral issues of mutual concern.”
In addition to encouraging the Palestinians and Israelis to resume talks suspended since 2010, the Obama administration has been consulting closely with the Netanyahu government over how best to isolate Iran and keep it from obtaining a nuclear weapon.
Netanyahu has expressed impatience with talks that the Obama administration has led with Iran and is skeptical that newly enhanced sanctions will work. The Obama administration wants to exhaust all diplomatic and economic options before deciding on a military strike.
The announcement of Clinton’s visit comes just after news earlier this week that Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, would visit Israel this summer. Dates for Romney’s visit have not been announced.
JTA content was used in this report.
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