‘Delegation being sent to China’

Michael Oren to Channel 10: ‘Question is if Chinese will join in on sanctions.’

February 20, 2010 00:51
1 minute read.
Michael Oren

Michael Oren. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski )


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Israeli ambassador to the United States Michael Oren revealed Friday, in an interview with Channel 10, that in its ongoing efforts to scuttle the Iranian nuclear weapons program, an Israeli delegation will be sent to China. “We are not too late,” Oren said. “We are in the thick of the process, both on the security and international fronts. Soon, an Israeli delegation will travel to China, but the big question is whether the Chinese will take part in this battle over sanctions.”

After Oren told Channel 10 reporters of the Israeli diplomatic initiative vis-à-vis the Chinese, he was asked about captured IDF soldier Gilad Schalit and claims made by his father, Noam Schalit, that the Obama administration that is delaying a prisoner-swap deal for the release of Gilad. “As an ambassador here, I do not feel that the Americans are delaying a deal,” said Oren.

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Oren also downplayed reports of a strained relationship between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and US President Barack Obama. “Newspapers claim that something is amiss in the relationship,” but, said Oren, “the truth is that behind the scenes there is very good cooperation with this [Obama] administration.”

“We do not have any enemies there,” continued Oren. According to the ambassador, the relationship between Obama and Netanyahu is a strong one: “There is a personal relationship and deep understanding between the two,” Oren said.
Responding to the recent outburst of Palestinian students during a speech he was giving at the University of California, Irvine campus, Oren said: “I did not respond in anger, but rather with disappointment. I decided to stay on the stage because we must not surrender.”

Oren went on to say that it is from American university campuses that the next generation of American leaders will hail, and that it is a front in the constant battle to explain the Israeli position.

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