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(photo credit: Ariel Harmony, Defense Ministry)
French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner told Israel Radio on Sunday that his country was worried over the strengthening of Iran's nuclear capabilities and knows something had to be done, either peacefully or by means of a military strike.
Kouchner called on the Israeli people to remember the Palestinian peace process even during a period of political instability, as he assessed that solving the Palestinian issue would make it easier to resolve the Iranian crisis.
The French foreign minister was in the region for talks with Israeli and Palestinian officials. He met with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and other Israeli leaders in Jerusalem.
Kouchner said that he was told of "real progress" in peacemaking during his talks but he added that he feared parties were waiting for the Israeli and US political situations to clear up. The US presidential election is less than a month away and Olmert is preparing to step down as prime minister.
Earlier, Kouchner said that France was continuing its efforts to secure the release of captured IDF soldier Gilad Schalit and was helping to transmit messages between the two sides.
Kouchner made the comments in a meeting with Meretz chairman Haim Oron and the party's former head, MK Yossi Beilin.
Later Sunday, Kouchner gave Livni a boost of support, telling a conference at the Foreign Ministry that he has full confidence in her if she forms a government.
"I have confidence in her because I know her," he said. "She will manage to create ... a vital Palestinian state bordering the state of Israel, guaranteeing the security of Israel."
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