Moldovan, German, Ivory Coast envoys present credentials

Moldova, the Ivory Coast and Germany offer encouraging relations with Israel.

Three new ambassadors presented credentials to President Moshe Katsav Wednesday. They were Larisa Miculet, the ambassador of Moldova, Prof. Kessie Raymond Koudou, the ambassador of the Ivory Coast and Dr. Harald Kindermann, the ambassador of Germany. Miculet told Katsav she wanted to enhance the excellent relations between their two countries by upgrading economic ties. Katsav encouraged her in this endeavor and told her there was a lot of potential in this direction. In his tete-a-tete with Koudou, Katsav expressed interest in what was happening in the Ivory Coast with regard to solving the conflict between the Muslims in the north and the Christians in the south. On bilateral matters, he recalled the warm friendship of former president Felix Houphouet Boigny, and was assured by Koudou that current President Laurent Gbagbo was equally well disposed towards Israel. Speaking on Gbagbo's behalf, Koudou issued an invitation to Katsav to pay a state visit to the Ivory Coast and promised him that he would receive a royal welcome. When it was Kindermann's turn to present his credentials, he spoke in Hebrew, but switched to English when introducing his wife and the senior members of his staff. Katsav spoke to all three ambassadors about the dangers posed by the Palestinian Authority being led by a Hamas government. He also spoke about the threat to world stability if Iran was permitted to develop nuclear weapons. Not only Israel and the immediate region would be in peril, said Katsav, but the whole world. Kindermann said that his country shared Israel's attitude toward Hamas, and added that Hamas must not be permitted to ignore the conditions set down by the European Union if it wanted to be recognized by Europe. He declared that on this issue, Germany would stand in solid support with Israel.