Obama Rejects Meeting with Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu

Carrie Dedrick | Friday, January 23, 2015

Obama Rejects Meeting with Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu

Israeli Prime Minister is set to visit Washington, D.C. in March, but President Obama says he will not meet with the Prime Minister during his trip. According to the White House, Netanyuha’s visit will be followed closely by the Israeli election; the President does not want to look as if he is taking sides. 

National Security Council spokesperson Bernadette Meehan said, "As a matter of longstanding practice and principle, we do not see heads of state or candidates in close proximity to their elections, so as to avoid the appearance of influencing a democratic election in a foreign country.” 

The Associated Press reports that Republican leaders recently invited Netanyahu to address Congress, without first asking the White House or State Department. This was viewed by the White House as a “breach of diplomatic decorum” the news outlet wrote. 

White House spokesman Josh Ernest said, "The typical protocol would suggest that the leader of a country would contact the leader of another country when he's traveling there. That certainly is how President Obama's trips are planned when we travel overseas. So this particular event seems to be a departure from that protocol."

Publication date: January 23, 2015