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Lieberman Photo: AFP
Lieberman Photo: AFP
 
 

Lieberman wants closer ties with Africa, Latin America

Foreign minister set to travel to both continents in coming month in bid to garner support on Iranian issue, curb Iranian influence

Roni Sofer
Published: 04.24.09, 09:06 / Israel News

In the coming months Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman will launch a diplomatic offensive against Iran in African and Latin American countries, believing that efforts must be invested in these continents as well, and not just in the United States and Europe.

 

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Lieberman recently instructed his staff to start preparations for two trips, one to Africa and one to Latin America, during which a series of diplomatic issues – ranging from economic cooperation to the Iranian nuclear threat – will be tackled.

 

"I attribute great importance to these countries. We shouldn't invest only in the US and Europe. The fight against Iran's nuclearization should be expanded," Lieberman explained to his staff, adding that it is was even more important today to strengthen the ties with African and Latin American countries, in light of Iran's growing influence in those regions.

 

The foreign minister will invite Israeli scientists and high-tech professionals to join his delegations, in order to try and establish technological and commercial cooperation and broaden the scope of Israeli exports to these continents.

 

However, Lieberman is scheduled to launch his first tour in foreign countries in Europe, where he will urge his European counterparts to push for more economic sanctions on Iran.

 

Lieberman meets China's FM

On Thursday Lieberman met in Jerusalem with Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, who invited the Israeli FM to visit China.

 

Jiechi said that his country considers the relations with Israel to be highly important and that it seeks to promote and upgrade them, especially at this time of global economic crisis.

 

Referring to the peace negotiations in the Middle East, the Chinese minister said that China will continue to work hard to promote peace in the region.

 

Lieberman stated that China is one of the most important players in world politics that could help Israel with the peace process and Iran.

 

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