‘No meetings at this point’ – Biden officials refuse to confirm Netanyahu sit-down

White House officials won’t confirm that Biden will meet Netanyahu in New York next week.

By World Israel News Staff

Following reports that President Joe Biden will privately meet in the near future with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in New York next week, and that he will eventually invite the Israeli premier for a formal sit-down at the White House, senior American officials denied plans for the two leaders to speak.

When asked by a reporter if Biden will speak to Biden next week at the United Nations General Assembly, Coordinator for Strategic Communications at the National Security Council John Kirby refused to confirm or deny that the president is planning on meeting Netanyahu there.

“No meetings to speak to at this point,” said Kirby.

He added that “we’ll have more towards the end of the week in terms of laying out the — the calendar or the President’s agenda at the UN General Assembly next week. I think on Friday we’ll have a lot more detail for you.”

The long-awaited meeting between Biden and Netanyahu comes on the heels of scathing public criticism from the Biden administration regarding Israel’s ongoing judicial reform legislation.

Read  As Hamas loses control of Gaza, Netanyahu vows Palestinian Authority won't be brought in to replace it

After calling Netanyahu’s right-wing government “extreme” and slamming the potential changes to Israel’s judicial system, Biden has kept his distance from the Israeli leader.

When Biden originally took office in January 2021, he waited almost a month before calling Netanyahu – in what many analysts interpreted as a clear message regarding his administration’s attitude towards the Israeli government.

In June 2023, Biden declared that Israel “cannot continue going down this road,” referencing judicial reform. It signified an unprecedented public criticism by an American leader regarding Israeli domestic policy.

“Israel is a sovereign country which makes its decisions by the will of its people and not based on pressures from abroad, including from the best of friends,” Netanyahu said in response at the time.

When asked by CNN why Netanyahu had not yet been invited to the White House, Biden said that the Israeli premier has “problems in his coalition” and confirmed that there were no plans to invite him to the White House in the near term.

“We are talking with [Netanyahu’s team] regularly, trying to tamp down what is going on. Hopefully, Bibi will continue move toward moderation and change,” he said.