By Mick Krever and Claire Calzonetti, CNN
Israel’s decision to agree to preliminary talks with the Palestinians are not because of outside pressure but rather because of the country’s own interest, the Israel's top point person for the talks, Tzipi Livni, told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Monday.
“It’s not a favor to the Palestinians, not to the E.U., and not even to the President of the United States,” Livni, who is also Justice Minister, told Amanpour from Jerusalem. “It is the interest of Israel.”
Livni said that she hoped to meet with the Palestinians in the next few days, and lay the groundwork for direct negotiations between the highest levels of government among the Israelis and Palestinians.
“I support deeply not only the idea of negotiations,” Livni said, “but the idea of the need to end the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.”