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Barak with Netanyahu
Photo: Dudu Azoulay
Netanyahu, Barak, Lieberman meet ahead of Mitchell visit
Prime minister summons his top cabinet ministers in preparation for arrival of US President Obama's special envoy this week, so will this triumvirate continue to lead the pack – or will additional ministers be brought into the fold?

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu summoned Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman on Monday to discuss the upcoming visit of George Mitchell, US President Barack Obama's special envoy to the Middle East.

 

Mitchell is scheduled to land in Israel on Wednesday. He will meet with Netanyahu on Thursday and later on will also hold meetings with top Palestinian Authority officials.

 

Netanyahu and Barak met in private prior to the joint meeting with Lieberman to discuss the arrangements for Mitchell's visit.

 

The narrow forum is shaping up to be Netanyahu's inner security cabinet – referred to as the prime minister's 'kitchen cabinet.'

 

However Netanyahu has apparently also promised three additional ministers – namely Eli Yishai, Silvan Shalom and Dan Meridor - that they will be part of a broader kitchen cabinet, one that will be narrower than the 12-member national security cabinet.

 

Netanyahu, Barak and Lieberman were joined on Monday by a number of senior state officials, including the prime minister's top political advisor Uzi Arad, and Amos Gilad, the head of the Defense Ministry's Diplomatic-Security Bureau.

 

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