London deputy mayor skips J'lem mayors' conference

No reason cited for the 11th-hour cancellation; spokeswoman fails to return repeated requests for comment.

October 17, 2007 22:12
1 minute read.
London deputy mayor skips J'lem mayors' conference

Nicky Gavron 88. (photo credit: )

London Deputy Mayor Nicky Gavron abruptly cancelled her participation in an international mayors' conference in Jerusalem, officials in the capital said Wednesday. Gavron, who was to attend the final day of the 25th Jerusalem Conference of Mayors in lieu of London Mayor Ken Livingstone, notified Israeli officials that she would not be present after all, a Jerusalem municipality spokeswoman said. No reason was cited for the 11th-hour cancellation. A spokeswoman for the City of London, who initially suggested that Gavron had never confirmed her trip to Jerusalem, did not return repeated requests for comment Wednesday. The four-day conference, which was attended by 34 mayors and deputy mayors from 30 countries around the world, was due to conclude Wednesday evening following a meeting with Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Prime Minster Ehud Olmert. Mayors from the US, Kiev, Dublin, Addis Ababa, Lima, Zagreb, and Tbilisi were among the attendees. The event, sponsored by the American Jewish Congress in association with the Foreign Ministry and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, aimed to give municipal leaders an up-front and personal look at life in Jerusalem. "What the media reports in the world is not the same as what is happening on the ground," said Mayor Nasser Ntege Sebaggala of Kampala, Uganda. Sebaggala, a Muslim who took time off to pray at the Al Aksa Mosque on the Temple Mount during his visit, said he was most struck by the coexistence between Jews, Muslims and Christians in the holy city - something he said is never shown in foreign press reports about Israel.

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