ROME - Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert expressed great satisfaction with his meeting with Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi.
During the meeting Prodi said that "Israel's Jewish character should be preserved." Olmert interpreted this sentence as Prodi's support of the Israeli stance on denying the Right of Return to Palestinian refugees.
The United Nations' former Secretary General Kofi Anan expressed a similar attitude on Tuesday.
At the end of the meeting Prodi and Olmert held a joint press conference in which Prodi said that he hopes a meeting between Olmert and the Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas would take place soon.
"Direct talks between the parties are utterly important," said Prodi, who even asked Olmert to try and ease the Palestinian's situation in the Authority.
During the meeting between the two, Prodi also stated his contempt for the Holocaust Conference that was held in Tehran this week.
At the press conference Prodi continued to express that he was absolutely outraged and appalled by the Holocaust Conference.
Olmert and Prodi, a successful meeting. (Photo: AFP)
Olmert thanked Prodi for his words regarding the Jewish state, and complimented the Italian prime minister on his country's participation in the international forces in Lebanon.
He also gave credit to the Lebanese and Israeli militaries for preventing Hizbullah from strengthening. Olmert also stressed the importance of continuing to reinforce the Lebanese government and preventing Hizbullah's taking over the country.
Prodi and olmert were both very satisfied with the meeting and the good relationship between the two countries.