Former Israeli ambassador to US Michael Oren..
(photo credit: Hyungwon Kang / Reuters)
Israel’s ambassador to the US Michael Oren denied reports that he asked to
return to Israel after nearly four years in Washington, and that he will be
replaced by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s top aide, Ron
Oren, who went to Washington soon after Netanyahu’s election in
2009, is attending the conference of Israel’s ambassadors and heads of
delegations meeting in Jerusalem. He told reporters covering President Shimon
Peres’s speech to the group that there was no truth in the story, and that it
was not the first time such rumors had surfaced.
This is also not the
first time Dermer’s name has been put forward as a possible ambassador to
Washington; he was mentioned as a possible candidate back in 2009 as
The Prime Minister’s Office declined to comment, and the embassy in
Washington dismissed the reports as baseless.
Oren also downplayed
reports of US displeasure with Israel’s recent announcement of new construction
projects in east Jerusalem and the settlements, saying the Americans were not
particularly angry about it. This has been a matter of dispute for a long time,
and there can be differences among even the best of friends, he
Oren added that this was not a big issue in the US, and that he has
not heard any condemnations of the move by US lawmakers.
recent surveys indicating that support for Israel among the American public was
at an all-time high. He also said that this was true not only of the public but
of Congress as well, where support for Israel crossed party lines.