Turkish president cancels New York meeting with Peres

Gul blames packed schedule for shelving meeting on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly; Beit Hanassi denies meeting was ever planned.

Peres Gul 311GPO (photo credit: GPO)
Peres Gul 311GPO
(photo credit: GPO)
Turkish President Abdullah Gul announced Sunday that he will not be able to meet with President Shimon Peres while in New York for the 65th UN General Assembly.  Speaking at a press conference, Gul said that his busy schedule would prevent him from holding the meeting.
Gul went on to speak of the importance of the General Assembly meeting for Turkey because it is currently sitting on the UN Security Council and is slated to chair the council during its membership. Speaking of Turkey's goals in the UN, he said that Turkey wishes to take up the issue of militancy in the Security Council and that Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu will be holding more than 50 bilateral meetings during the summit.
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Responding to reports that the meeting with President Peres had been canceled, Beit Hanassi put out a statement on Monday saying that "the meeting was not organized in advance."
The statement added that meetings with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas had also not been scheduled during his stay in New York.
The president is set to address the UN General Assembly on Monday. Later in the week, he is scheduled to speak to a special session of the Clinton Global Initiative focusing on the Middle East where Gul is also scheduled to speak.