Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu confirmed a White House invitation even though Biden administration spokespeople have not said that the Israeli leader is heading to the Oval Office.
US President Joe Biden “in the last conversation we had invited me to the White House in the fall, I think it's in September, but we will finalize the date,” Netanyahu told ABC in a short interview published on Thursday.
“I think our relations are very strong. I am not just saying that. The cooperation in intelligence, in security in strategic matters is as strong as it has ever been,” he said.
Netanyahu spoke amid a period of tension with Washington over the Knesset passage earlier this week of legislation that narrows the review powers of the court.
Israel and the US “working on things that will change history"
Israel and the US “are working on things that will change history, specifically, we are trying to block Iran’s aggression and advance peace with Saudi Arabia,” Netanyahu said.
“This will change the world. This will be a pivot of history,” he said, adding that “the relations with the US are as strong as ever.
“Believe me, the US is our irreplaceable and indispensable ally. We have no better friend and … the US has not better friend than Israel, not only in the Middle East, but in the world.”
After the interview, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre still refused to confirm a Netanyahu invitation to the Oval Office, reiterating what she had said before that the two leaders would meet in the US.
“What I can say is they both agreed to meet in the United States later this year. Both teams are working through what that’s going to look like, the timing. I — I don’t have anything else to share beyond that — beyond,” Jean-Pierre said.