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Prime Minister Netanyahu Photo: AFP
Prime Minister Netanyahu Photo: AFP
 
 

Washington caught off guard by Netanyahu visit

Israel says PM did not consult Obama ahead of trip because meeting on peace process unnecessary

Yitzhak Benhorin
Published: 10.25.09, 09:32 / Israel News

WASHINGTON Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's intention to visit Washington for the annual UJC General Assembly has surprised many on Capitol Hill and was apparently not coordinated with the Obama administration.

 

An American source told Ynet Sunday that news of the visit had been received with reserved astonishment.

 

The Obama administration has not yet responded to questions of whether a meeting with Netanyahu was forthcoming due to their surprise over the unscheduled visit. On the other hand, failure to invite Netanyahu to the White House may be perceived as a diplomatic crisis.

 

Sources in Jerusalem say Netanyahu did indeed decide to attend the GA without first consulting President Barack Obama, but that since the latter would also be present at the event the two may meet in any case.

 

The sources say a summit between the two leaders would be superfluous at this point in the peace process, and for this reason an official meeting has not been scheduled.

 

An official statement regarding Netanyahu's visit is scheduled to be published soon in the US, and an unofficial oral announcement has already been given by the Jewish Federations' leaders. The prime minister's visit is scheduled to take place on November 8-10.

 

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