Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom discussed with the United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan in a Friday meeting the possibility of an Israeli seat on the UN Security Council.

‘The time has come to normalize the status of Israel here in the United Nations,’ Shalom told reporters after talks Annan.

‘I told him that one way forward to normalize our status here is by asking to be a member of the Security Council.’ He added.

Shalom praised the recent election of Israel’s UN Ambassador Dan Gillerman as a vice president of the General Assembly, saying it moved Israel toward a ‘normalization’ of relations with the UN.

According to UN by-laws, regional groups decide who fills the 10 rotating seats on the UN’s most powerful body. Until recently, Israel was the only UN member that was not part of a regional group.

In 2000, after intense pressure from the United States, the UN regional group of European, North American and other countries invited Israel to become a temporary member.

‘Israel is the only one that was not part of the rotation of being members here at the council,’ Shalom said.

‘We should start thinking about being member of the Security Council, even though it’s not going to happen tomorrow.’ He added.