Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett arrives in Washington to meet with Biden on Iran

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Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett arrived in Washington, DC on Tuesday evening for his first diplomatic visit abroad since taking office.

The Prime Minister and President Biden will discuss Iran during the two-day visit to the White House.

“One thing is clear: the United States and #Israel don’t have best friends with each other,” the Israeli embassy wrote on Twitter with a video of the prime minister getting off his plane.

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Bennett took over from former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in June after Bennett formed a coalition government and ousted Netanyahu for corruption.

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett speaks in Jerusalem, August 18, 2021 (Associated Press)
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Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett speaks in Jerusalem, August 18, 2021 (Associated Press)

Bennett was scheduled to meet with senior White House officials, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin on Wednesday, and with Biden on Thursday.

The prime minister said in a statement his conversation with Biden would likely focus on the Iran nuclear deal, the coronavirus pandemic and the international economy.

Bennett spoke out against the possibility of a new nuclear deal between Iran and world powers and said any deal must also curb Iran’s regional aggression, referring to the country’s “leap forward” in the last two or three years. The past few months have seen a series of attacks on ships connected to Israel, allegedly carried out by Iran.

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“Now is the time to stop the Iranians, to stop this thing,” he promised his cabinet earlier this week, he would tell Biden. He called the nuclear deal “expired and is irrelevant, even to those who thought it once was.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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