Netanyahu, Barak spar over 'uncoordinated' US meetings


Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak (L) and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) stand next to a burnt armoured vehicle near the Kerem Shalom border crossing after unidentified gunmen crossed into Israel from Egypt on August 6 , 2012.


David Buimovich

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with Defense Minister Ehud Barak Saturday evening to discuss Barak's "uncoordinated" meetings with Obama administration officials.

Netanyahu is reprimanding Barak over the meetings, including one with Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel, and another with Obama's National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, the Jerusalem Post reported

As GlobalPost's Jerusalem correspondent Noga Tarnopolsky reported: 

Israel Radio reports that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak are currently meeting. Netanyahu is demanding clarifications from Barak regarding "uncoordinated" meetings Barak has allegedly held with American leaders. Following accusations Netanyahu made last week, in which he claimed the defense minister was "undermining" him with American leaders, Netanyahu is demanding that such encounters not be repeated and to underscore that full coordination is a "necessary condition" for the security of the state.

Barak spokesman Barak Seri said in a statement that Minister Barak "will continue his work on behalf of the citizens of Israel. At this stage, he does not get reprimanded by anyone, including the Prime Minister." 

According to Ha'aretz, however, the "crisis" between the two politicians is just a ruse to increase Barak's popularity and build the coalition of their parties, Likud and Atzmaut. 

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