WASHINGTON- Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Gabriela Shalev is planning on remaining in the General Assembly hall to listen to Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's address at the upcoming General Assembly in New York.
"If he says something that does not ring well in Israeli ears, I will get up and leave the hall," Shalev promised Ynet on Monday.
Following Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's decision not to sit in the hall during US President Barack Obama's speech in order to avoid being photographed next to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Ambassador Shalev was chosen to be Israel's representative during the address.
"It shall not be that someone's presence in the GA hall will prevent Israel's delegation to the UN from being at the opening panel when the US president speaks. The prime minister's considerations were manifold, but we will be there and we will respect the US president," explained Shalev.
Even though Netanyahu, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, and Environment Protection Minister Gilad Erdan will be in New York for the GA session, it was decided that Israel will not have ministerial representation at the opening of the session in a bid not to be photographed near the Iranian president, who sits two chairs away from the Israeli delegation with only Ireland and Iraq in between the two.
The Libyan leader is schedule to speak after the US president at the 64th General Assembly. "If we boycott every time a Libyan speaks, we won't be able to enter the assembly hall. The General Assembly president for the upcoming year is Ali Treki, the former Libyan foreign minister. I was at the reception he held, even with an Israeli tag. I respect him as the GA president. He seems like a moderate person," said Shalev.
Libya is also currently a member of the UN Security Council. As such, Obama and Qaddafi are slated to meet again during the Security Council session on dismantling nuclear facilities.
The Iranian president will give his address to the GA on Wednesday, but he plans on staying in New York for at least another two days. A mass protest in front of the UN building against Ahmadinejad is planned for Friday. Later in the evening, the Iranian leader will hold a press conference.
Prime Minister Netanyahu will address the GA on Thursday, and will leave New York on the same day. His speech, as purported in Jerusalem, will focus on Iran and the threat it poses to the world.