Washington: The White House insisted on Sunday there was "no snub" of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his meeting with President Barack Obama, and stressed the "unshakeable" US bonds with its Mideast ally.
"This was not about formalities. This was not about a ceremonial meeting. This was a working meeting. A working meeting among friends," White House senior adviser David
Axelrod told CNN.
"There was no snub intended. Look, Israel is a close, dear and valued friend of the US. A great ally. That is an unshakeable bond," Axelrod said.
He added however that "sometimes, part of friendship is expressing yourself bluntly."
He made his remarks after the United States last week refused to back down in a row over Jewish settlements that has driven a wedge between the two countries.
"We have a deep abiding interest in Israel`s security and we believe the peace process is essential to that. We are doing everything we can to move that process forward," the adviser said in a broadcast that aired on Sunday.
The White House failed last week to end a row with Israel during Netanyahu`s visit to Washington, and the prime minister returned home to a torrent of media derision after he was deprived of the normal trappings granted to a visiting leader at the White House.