In an exclusive interview with Reuters, U.S. President Barack Obama dismisses speculation that relations between Washington and Israel are strained. Mana Rabiee reports.
In an exclusive interview with Reuters, U.S. President Barack Obama tried to lay to rest any speculation that relations between Washington and Israel were strained. SOUNDBITE: U.S. PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA SAYING: "That bond is unbreakable and so we need to make clear from the outset how strong our alliance with Israel is. The seocnd point is that we actually share a goal, which is making sure that Iran does not have a nuclear weapon." The President's administration was furious after Republican congressional leaders failed to give the White House advance notice , per protocol , that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was to address the U.S. Congress and argue against a U.S. deal with Iran over its nuclear program. Netanyahu is set to give his speech to Congress on Tuesday. Speaking to the U.S. Jewish lobby AIPAC, Netanyahu also sought to lower the temperature -- saying he means no disrespect for Obama and appreciates the military diplomatic support for Israel from the U.S. But he left little doubt about his objections to the ongoing talks. SOUNDBITE: ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER BENJAMIN NETANYAHU SAYING: "As prime minister of Israel, I have a moral obligation to speak up in the face of these dangers while there's still time to avert them." Netanyahu is expected to press U.S. lawmakers to block a deal with Iran. Israel says a deal would endanger it's very existence but Obama's aides say the deal could be a signature foreign policy achievement for the American president.