Jerusalem, Jul 16 - The US today asked its staunch ally Israel to work with it in a "smart" and "creative" way to wade through the radical changes sweeping the Middle East, at a time of great uncertainty in the region.
During a whirlwind trip to Israel, that caps her eight nation tour, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton discussed with Israeli President Shimon Peres the issue of Iran and the transition in neighbouring Egypt.
With no solution to the longstanding stalemate on peace process in sight, Clinton also discussed the Palestinian issue with the leader of the Jewish state.
"It is a time of uncertainty but also of a big opportunity in the region. At times like these friends like us need to work together in a smart, creative and courageous way," she told reporters after her meeting Peres.
During her meetings in Israel she repeatedly stressed that the changes in the Middle East have given the US and Israel a chance to advance their shared goals of "security, stability and democracy".
Coming straight from Egypt, she said Israel and the US should work together in a "smart, creative and courageous way" to tackle the turmoil surrounding the region. The Secretary of State also met Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, before her meeting Peres.
At the centre of Clinton's meetings in Israel is the Iran nuclear issue, as well as violence in Syria, the new government in Egypt, and the peace process with the Palestine. Some differences of opinion have surfaced between the two close allies on all these issues, which has seen a flurry of high-level visits from the US to Israel recently.
The US is convinced that Israel has to refrain from unilateral military action against Iranian nuclear facilities, and give more time for sanctions to work. The US also thinks that Israel should push new policy over the peace process to dissuade Palestinians from turning to the UN for state recognition in September. PTI