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The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, is traveling to
Israel Monday to speak at a conference and while
in the Middle East will hold talks with Israeli and Palestinian
On Wednesday, Rice will take part in a conference hosted by Israeli President Shimon Peres.
her three-day visit, U.S. officials said Rice will meet with Israeli
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud
Abbas. The United States is trying to get Israel and the Palestinians
to resume peace negotiations, but Rice's meetings are described as
bilateral in nature.
The ambassador's visit comes at a time when
Israel is irate about a U.N. report accusing both Israel and the
militant group Hamas of committing war crimes during the Gaza conflict
at the beginning of this year. The Israeli Cabinet said Sunday that
the three-week offensive against Hamas was legitimate self-defense.