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Biden and Netanyahu are ‘likely’ to meet when PM 'goes to washington' to address congress in July

NYT: Biden refused to support Israel's retaliation after Iran attack in April

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with United States President Joe Biden in Tel Aviv, October 18, 2023 (Photo by Miriam Alster/Flash90).

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. President Joe Biden will ‘likely’ meet when Netanyahu is in Washington at the end of July to address the U.S. Congress, according to U.S. and local media reports on Tuesday.

“The president has known Prime Minister Netanyahu for three decades. They will likely see each other when the prime minister is here over the course of that week, but we have nothing to announce at this time,” a White House official told the Times of Israel.

"Less than a week ago, Netanyahu was supposed to arrive in Washington as a poor man, under a barrage of criticism, prepared for protests and boycotts of his speech, and without a promise that he would see the president at all," Ariel Kahana, Israel Hayom's senior diplomatic correspondent, commented.

"And suddenly, the world turned upside down, Biden is the one who now needs Netanyahu. To convey that business is as usual, that the collapse against Trump is behind him and that he is still the leader of the free world. This is good for Israel," Kahana wrote.

Despite the decades-long cordial relationship between Netanyahu and Biden, the question of whether Netanyahu would be invited to the White House significantly strained bilateral relations before the war. Biden refused to extend the invitation due to the Israeli government's judicial reform plans.

While they met shortly before the war when Netanyahu was in New York, the prime minister still has not visited the White House since his return to power in December 2022.

Netanyahu's meeting with Biden took place while he visited Israel just weeks after the Oct. 7 invasion and massacre by Hamas.

Despite the visit and Biden’s initial passionate support for Israel, the two governments have increasingly clashed over Israel’s war strategy, with the Biden administration sharpening its tone, pulling support at the United Nations, and even halting at least one weapons shipment to Israel.

Last month, Netanyahu released a video accusing the U.S administration of withholding larger amounts of weapons, which sparked angry reactions from the White House.

Despite this, the Biden administration later confirmed there were “bottlenecks” that it claimed have since been resolved.

The New York Times on Tuesday published quotes from a phone call between the leaders in April, following after the Iranian attack on Israel, which offered yet another glimpse into the fraught relations.

“Let me be crystal clear… If you launch a big attack on Iran, you’re on your own,” Biden reportedly told Netanyahu in a call the report characterized as a “lecture.”

According to the NYT, Netanyahu tried to impress upon Biden the need to hit back hard after the unprecedented attack in order to avoid looking weak.

“You do this, and I’m out,” Biden replied. “Take the win.”

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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