US, Israel: Obama-Netanyahu Transcript Fake

Tuesday, 29 Jul 2014 06:40 PM

By Greg Richter

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A leaked transcript of a conversation between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu don't "bear any resemblance to reality," the White House said Tuesday.

Netanyahu's office also said the transcript is fake.

"We have seen these reports, and neither the reports nor the alleged transcript bear any resemblance to reality," said National Security Council Spokeswoman Bernadette Meehan.

"It's shocking and disappointing that someone would sink to misrepresenting a private conversation between the president and the prime minister in fabrications to the Israeli press."

Netanyahu's office issued a similar statement via Twitter:





The U.S. National Security Council and the U.S. ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro, issued the same tweets, word-for-word, as those made by Netanyahu's office.

The transcript quotes Netanyahu as saying, "Qatar and Turkey are the biggest supporters of Hamas. It's impossible to rely on them to be fair mediators." Obama's response, according to the transcript, is, "I trust Qatar and Turkey. Israel is not in the position that it can choose its mediators."

The transcript has angered members of the Israeli press, but is only part of its criticism of the United States' role in peace negotiations with Hamas, which has been firing rockets at Israeli cities for weeks. Israel has shot most of them down, and began a ground attack in Gaza on July 17.

Critics say Kerry's proposal actually would strengthen Hamas' position by suggesting that Qatar pay the salaries of Hamas civil servants. The United States has long urged Qatar to end its relationship with Hamas, which the United States labels a terrorist organization.

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