Peres congratulates victorious Italian PM Prodi

Former prime minister, Shimon Peres, phoned newly elected Italian president Romano Prodi on Wednesday to congratulate him on his recent political victory. Peres mentioned his long-term friendship with Prodi, and the latter expressed his wish to meet with the former PM in the near future. It was feared that Prodi would not be the friend to Israel that his predecessor Berlusconi was. Berlusconi's conservative government distinguished itself with strong support of both Israel and the United States, even though his backing for the Iraq War was extremely unpopular at home.