Biden and Netanyahu
Biden and NetanyahuAmos Ben Gershom/GPO

A senior Israeli political official said on Friday that the Biden administration is not interfering in Israel’s affairs in a more significant manner compared to previous administrations.

Speaking to Israeli reporters, the official said, "The administration interferes in Israel's private affairs no more than in the past. They tried to remove Benjamin Netanyahu from power twice. There was blatant interference in the past, Bill Clinton tried to overthrow the Prime Minister. He admitted it."

The political official also said, "It was made clear to us that until our internal affairs calm down, there will be no invitation [for Netanyahu] to the White House."

The comments followed recent criticism by the US over several issues, including Israel’s planned judicial reform and its passage of a law repealing the Disengagement in northern Samaria, which resulted in the State Department summoning Israel’s Ambassador to the US, Michael Herzog, for a meeting.

Despite the tensions, White House National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby stressed on Wednesday that Israel and the US remain close allies.

“Israel remains a strong ally and a deep, deep friend in the region, I’d say even around the world,” Kirby told reporters.

On Friday, an official in the State Department told Israel National News that, while there are many attempts to present the situation between the Biden administration and Israel as a crisis, the situation is not like that at all.

"The remarks of the spokesman of the National Security Council were very clear and they reflect the President's position well. There is no crisis between Israel and the US. There are differences of opinion on some of the issues and we work them out at different levels - as we have done in the past."

The official also responded to Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara, who lambasted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over his address in which he vowed to play a greater role in the judicial overhaul plan.

Baharav-Miara called Netanyahu’s declaration “illegal,” and warned him against any involvement in the judicial overhaul. She added that Netanyahu is “required to adhere to the opinion given to you by the Attorney General to avoid any conflict of interest.”

In response, the Israeli official said, "The Prime Minister is not at risk of any conflict of interest. He has no conflict of interest. In a crisis that is one of the most difficult that has ever happened here in the country - it is impossible for the Prime Minister to stand on the sidelines. This has no repercussions on the issue of the conflict of interest. He's looking for any way [to resolve the issue], looking for a partner. If he had any leads - he would know how to continue."

(Israel National News' North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Israel National News articles, however, is Israeli time.)