Herzog and Lapid: harsh words for Netanyahu's actions

Herzog raps Netanyahu for Congress speech ahead of elections

Opposition leader accuses prime minister of directly attacking Obama, harming Israeli security interests; says he could form a government coalition today.

Opposition leader Isaac Herzog on Sunday joined a growing chorus of disapproval over Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's decision to make a speech to Congress on Iran two weeks before Israel's national elections.



"Netanyahu is directly attacking the US president," Herzog told Army Radio. "Netanyahu's violent behavior is harming Israel's security interests."


The White House had not been informed in advance of the decision by the Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner to invite Netanyahu to address Congress and the Senate, something which goes against usual protocol.


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"We haven’t heard from the Israelis directly about the trip at all,” WHite House spokesman Josh Earnest said Friday. “The typical protocol would suggest that the leader of a country would contact the leader of another country when he is travelling there... So this particular event seems to be a departure from that protocol.”


Furthermore, Israeli ambassador to the United States Ron Dermer, a close Netanyahu ally, did not raise the invitation during a lengthy meeting he had with US Secretary of State John Kerry last weekend.


Isaac Herzog in the Ynet studio. (Photo: Eli Segal, Uri Davidovich) (Photo: Eli Segal)
Isaac Herzog in the Ynet studio. (Photo: Eli Segal, Uri Davidovich)



Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid also lashed out at Netanyahu on Saturday, saying that "Netanyahu is destroying Israel's relations with the United States over an elections speech." 


According to reports, the White House was furious about the move. Kerry described it as "a little unusual", but insisted that Netanyahu was always welcome to speak in the US. The president will not meet with Netanyahu, citing the visit's close proximity to the March 17 elections in Israel.


Herzog also declined to make a pledge undertake not to sit in the Netanyahu government. "I can't stand this question, because it suggests the possibility that I will not win, and will not form the next government," Herzog told the radio.


"I say I can already form a government and have the option of putting together several configurations of government. We have refrained for some days now from talking about things that are really not important to the people."




פרסום ראשון: 01.25.15, 14:36
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