WASHINGTON – Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni was surprised Friday night by three journalists who shot accusations at her over the fighting in the Gaza Strip.
The incident took place at the Washington Press Club, after Livni signed a cooperation agreement with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice aimed at preventing the smuggling of weapons from Iran to Hamas.
One of the journalists called Livni a "terrorist" and complained that Israel was preventing reporters from covering the war in Gaza.
"What, are you like Zimbabwe?" another woman told the foreign minister.
The journalists took advantage of the opportunity and the stage to read out sections from human rights organizations' reports on Israel's conduct during Operation Cast Lead.
Livni's bodyguards were on high alert when at a certain stage one person, who did not introduce himself, began accusing Israel of murdering innocent civilians.
The event's host asked the man to settle for one question, but the latter cried out, "You let her speak here and don't let as ask questions. Since when are terrorists accommodated here?"
In spite of the unpleasant incident, the foreign minister kept cool and reiterated Israel's traditional stances. She stressed that Israel had left the Gaza Strip three years ago and was forced to return as part of a military operation.
Livni only lost her peace of mind once, when she was asked by an al-Jazeera reporter if her visit to Washington was part of her election campaign.
"Nonsense," Livni replied, adding "we work together. Defense Minister Barak and I are doing the job. I work according to my commitments as the foreign minister. We work together with the prime minister to defend Israel's citizens."