Netanyahu and Obama hold secret talks

By Jessica Elgot, November 10, 2009
Follow Jessica on Twitter
Barack Obama and Binyamin Netanyahu have held private talks in Washington

Barack Obama and Binyamin Netanyahu have held private talks in Washington

Israeli President Binyamin Netanyahu has told US President Barack Obama that he is “extremely serious” about advancing peace talks with the Palestinians and the Arab world.

The two held a private meeting in Washington where they discussed Israeli security and the nuclear threat from Iran.

Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak, Israeli ambassador Michael Oren, National Security Council head Uzi Arad and the Israeli envoy Yitzhak Molcho were all present at points throughout the meeting.

The leaders were tight-lipped over the exact content of the talks, with Mr Netanyahu and Mr Obama cancelling a press briefing and Mr Barak cancelled scheduled radio interviews after the meeting.

Instead, the leaders released a joint statement, saying simply: "The president reaffirmed our strong commitment to Israel's security, and discussed security cooperation on a range of issues. The president and prime minister also discussed Iran and how to move forward on Middle East peace."

After the meeting with Mr Obama, Mr Netanyahu will fly to France to meet French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

    Last updated: 2:06pm, November 11 2009