Obama congratulates Netanyahu on election win: White House

US President Barack Obama on Thursday called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to congratulate him on his recent election win, after a campaign that soured relations between the two allies.

AFP| Updated: Mar 20, 2015, 03:30 AM IST

Washington: US President Barack Obama on Thursday called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to congratulate him on his recent election win, after a campaign that soured relations between the two allies.

Obama spoke to the Israeli leader "to congratulate him on his party`s success in winning a plurality of Knesset seats," the White House said.

"The president emphasized the importance the United States places on our close military, intelligence, and security cooperation with Israel, which reflects the deep and abiding partnership between both countries."

Ties have been tested by Netanyahu`s pledge on the campaign trail to oppose the creation of a Palestinian state, which had been the starting point of countless rounds of Middle East peace negotiations.

Obama waited two days before making the normally routine congratulatory call.

The White House said that during the conversation, Obama "reaffirmed the United States` long-standing commitment to a two-state solution that results in a secure Israel alongside a sovereign and viable Palestine."

Since the election, Netanyahu has sought to row back on his campaign rhetoric, but the White House has pointedly stated it will review policies that provided diplomatic cover for Israel at the United Nations.