Israel’s approval of new East Jerusalem housing units during a visit by U.S. Vice President Joe Biden looks like a deliberate attempt to frustrate upcoming proximity talks between Israel and the Palestinians, President Barack Obama’s chief political adviser David Axelrod said on Sunday.
I am not going to discuss what diplomatic talks we’ve had underneath that, but I think the Israelis understand clearly why we were upset and what, you know, what we want moving forward,” Axelrod added.
“There was a regrettable incident here, that occurred innocently,” Netanyahu told his cabinet at its weekly meeting, though he urged ministers to stay calm amid the tensions.
“We opened the newspapers this morning and read all kinds of commentary and assumptions regarding the crisis with the U.S. I recommend not to get carried away and to calm down,” Netanyahu said.
Sources in the Prime Minister’s Office said over the weekend that the ensuing crisis appeared to be orchestrated by the U.S. administration, as Netanyahu apologized to Biden and believed that the crisis was behind the two allies.