Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni will be meeting Sunday with Jordan's King Abdullah in the framework of the World Economic Forum to be held in Sharm el-Sheikh. Foreign Ministry officials said that Livni may also meet with senior Egyptian officials, including President Hosni Mubarak.
The foreign minister will be meeting with Jordan's king, who has been seeking to expand his involvement in talks between Israel and the Palestinians. About two weeks ago, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert met with Abdullah in his Amman palace. The Jordanian news agency reported at the time that the king urged Olmert to set a firm timetable for accelerating negotiations with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
Should Livni meet with Mubarak, this could have diplomatic implications, against the backdrop of Egyptian Intelligence Chief Omar Suleiman's visit in Jerusalem at the beginning of this week. The Egyptian government has been attempting to secure a lull agreement between Israel and Palestinian groups in the Gaza Strip.
If the meeting goes ahead, Foreign Ministry officials say that Livni will emphasize the Israeli message, already conveyed to Suleiman: "There will be no business as usual in Gaza as long as Gilad Shalit is in Hamas captivity."
The World Economic Forum is expected to draw 12 leaders including US President George Bush, as well as representatives of 55 countries and a total of 1,500 participations. The Forum will also include a summit meeting bringing together bush, Mubarak, Abdullah, and Abbas. Prime Minister Olmert chose not to attend the summit, but is expected to travel to Egypt in the coming weeks to meet Mubarak.
On Monday, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, who leads the lull contacts vis-à-vis Egypt, will also be traveling to Sharm.