WASHINGTON - US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will set out for Israel Tuesday and is scheduled to hold meeting s with Israeli and Palestinian leaders in Jerusalem and Ramallah on Wednesday and Thursday.
According to US sources, Rice may present an American draft for a possible Israeli-Palestinian deal, ahead of the Mideast peace conference that will be held in November.
Israel's Ambassador to the US Salai Meridor will also travel to Israel to attend meeting in preparations for Rice's visit.
"She (Rice) wants to see what she can do to move that process forward," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said on Monday. "All of this is in an effort to lay the foundations for a successful international meeting."
"What she wants to do is to try to get the parties together and to start working on ways in which they might come together in a concrete fashion to try to push forward understandings about how a two-state solution might emerge," McCormack said.
The secretary of state will dedicate much of her time in the next week and-a-half to the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Following her meetings in the region, she will attend a meeting of the Quartet in New York next week, as well as with donor countries that support the Palestinian Authority.
Rice is also set to meet representatives of the Gulf states, Egypt and Jordan to discuss the upcoming US-sponsored regional summit, and hold talks with other Arab leaders.