The Prime Minister's Office would not comment Thursday on reports that
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's top aide Ron Dermer had decided to step down
and will leave his job following US President Barack Obama's scheduled visit at the
end of March.
A Maariv report of Dermer's likely departure came just days after another
key Netanyahu confidant, cabinet secretary Zvi Hauser, announced he would be
leaving office once a new government was sworn in.
Dermer enjoys a close relationship with Netanyahu, and has served as one
of his central advisors since Netanyahu began his second term as prime minister
The 42-year-old Dermer's interest in
stepping down is believed to have to do with the non-stop rigor of the job and a
desire to spend more time with his family – he has four small sons and a another
child on the way -- and not to any
policy disagreements with the prime minister.
Dermer's name was raised recently as a possible replacement for Michael
Oren as Israel's next ambassador to Washington. Netanyahu,
when asked last month by The Jerusalem Post whether Dermer would be named
ambassador to the US, replied, "I have not yet made any
decisions to that effect."