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Israeli Finance Minister: Netanyahu is sabotaging relations with US

August 7, 2014 at 10:43 am

Israeli Finance Minister, Yair Lapid, accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of sabotaging the country’s strategic relations with the United States, saying relations between the two countries have reached their lowest point ever.

Mareev newspaper quoted Lapid as saying, in a closed session, that Netanyahu “caused a lot of damage to the strategic relations with the United States”. Adding that the relations between Israel and the US have not experienced this deterioration before, Americans only speak to Netanyahu only when absolutely necessary.

The newspaper reported that in the wake of deteriorating relations between Netanyahu and the US administration Lapid opened new channels of communication with American officials, going over Netanyahu’s head. It said he has extensive contacts with US Secretary of State John Kerry and the US ambassador in Tel Aviv Dan Shapiro.

Lapid said what Netanyahu had done was extremely offensive, leaked details of a telephone conversation between the prime minister and Shapiro revealed that Netanyahu rebuked the US official in a manner which Lapid deemed insulting and demeaning to one of Israel’s closest friends in the United States. The finance minister said it was unreasonable.