dinsdag 21 april 2009

President Zwitserland ontmoet Ahmadinejad van Iran

Altijd neutraal blijven en met iedereen relaties onderhouden is het Zwitserse devies, dat is goed voor de handel en het bankwezen.


Last update - 09:42 20/04/2009       
Swiss leader, Ahmadinejad meet despite Israeli objection
By Haaretz Service
Swiss President Hans Rudolf Merz met Sunday with his Iranian counterpart Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Geneva on Sunday, a day before the opening of the United Nations anti-racism conference.
Merz described the presence of Ahmadinejad at the Durban II conference as a good chance to discuss ways to mature bilateral ties as well as regional and international cooperation, according to the Iranian Student News Agency.
Ahmadinejad - who has repeatedly called for the destruction of Israel and denied the Holocaust - is slated to speak on the first day of the conference, which happens to fall on Holocaust Memorial Day.
Israel, which is boycotting the conference along with many Western countries, on Sunday voiced explicit criticism of the Swiss president's offer to meet Ahmadinejad on the sidelines of the conference in Geneva.
Israel's former foreign minister Silvan Shalom, who was recently appointed regional cooperation minister, called the offer "wretched," adding: "The fact that Ahmadinejad is embraced by the Swiss president and others leads him to think that there is no reason to back down from his line of thinking."
Deputy foreign minister Danny Ayalon said that the meeting "caught us by surprise," telling Army Radio that Merz's meeting "hurts him and Switzerland more than anything else."
Israel has sent a delegation to Geneva to publicly protest Durban II, a summit many Western countries fear will be used as a forum to criticize Israel.
As part of its publicity campaign, the Israelis will organize demonstrations during the speech, and will distribute materials on human rights violations in Iran - with particular emphasis on public executions and violence against women.
The campaign will be overseen by Israel Ambassador to Geneva Ronnie Lashno-Yaar. He will be assisted by Nobel Prize laureate Elie Weisel, U.S. law Prof. Alan Dershowitz and film actor Jon Voight. A special media room will also be set up in Geneva, to provide immediate responses to anti-Israeli statements.
Meanwhile, Dershowitz on Sunday was escorted out of the Geneva hotel where Ahmadinejad was to stay, after declaring that he planned to challenge the Iranian leader about his views on Israel and the Holocaust.

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