Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni harshly criticized the fact that no meeting has been convened on the significance of Hamas' strengthening in the Gaza Strip and the threat this poses on Israel.
Calling for such a meeting during a press conference with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Monday, Livni said she should not be hearing about experts' opinions on the situation through the media.
Although Livni did not name any names, and refused to comment when asked directly if she was talking about Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, it is clear that she was indirectly attacking the prime minister for his conduct regarding Hamas' strengthening in Gaza.
After the press conference, Livni's office stressed that she was talking out against the military and not against the prime minister. When asked by Ynet if she was referring to Olmert in her speech, Livni said, "I have said my part."
Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni after her meeting with German FM (photo: AP)
Livni also addressed the political crisis following last week's publication of the Winograd report. "Last Wednesday I was faced with a difficult crisis. I believe that being in the government is not a virtue on its own. I am there for a reason and a purpose and the purpose is the diplomatic process. I plan to develop processes, to make an evaluation of the situation in the near future, and act accordingly," said Livni.
When asked how the crisis between herself and Prime Minister Olmert would affect diplomatic processes in the region, particularly regarding dialogue with the Palestinians and the Arab peace initiative, Livni said she believed there was complete Israeli agreement on the need to promote such processes.
"When it comes to the Israeli need to live in peace and security in the formula of two states for two peoples, there is Israeli consent. This is a matter that should be dealt with in the coming weeks and I am sure that we can advance the right process," she said.
During the press conference, Livni also confirmed that she would be visiting Cairo on Thursday for talks on bilateral matters including weapon smuggling from Egypt to Gaza, the joint border, and the Palestinian issue.