Obama Confirms He Will Not Meet with Netanyahu During March Visit to U.S.

Obama Confirms He Will Not Meet with Netanyahu During March Visit to U.S.
Fecha de publicación: 
29 January 2015
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“I’m declining to meet with him simply because our general policy is we don’t meet with any world leader two weeks before their election,” said Obama in the interview, which was recorded during his recent visit to India and which will be released in its entirety on Sunday.

“I think that’s inappropriate, and that’s true with some of our closest allies,” Obama told CNN, although the White House last week had said that he would not meet with the Israeli leader on his Washington visit in early March to avoid any perception of trying to influence the results of Israel’s March 17 election.

The president gave the example of his recent meeting in Washington with British Prime Minister David Cameron, which came far enough in advance of the British election next May so “that it doesn’t look like in some ways we’re meddling or putting our thumbs on the scale.”

In a clear challenge to Obama, and without consulting him, House Speaker John Boehner – a Republican – proposed to Netanyahu that he address a plenary session of Congress in the Capitol on March 3 and the Israeli leader accepted the invitation.

Netanyahu will speak before Congress, where Republicans control both chambers, and he will also attend the annual conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, the main pro-Israeli U.S. pressure group.

In the CNN interview, Obama also spoke about Iran and said that “For us to undermine diplomacy at this critical time for no good reason is a mistake.”

The administration has said that talks with Tehran are crucial to maintaining pressure on that regime and achieving a breakthrough by the end of June to end its nuclear program.

Obama has warned Congress that he will veto any legislative proposal supporting new sanctions on Iran although many senators, both Republican and Democrat, have come out in favor of such a proposal.

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