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Ehud Barak coming to Washington for consultations

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WASHINGTON (JTA) — Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak is traveling to Washington to meet with top defense officials.

Barak, who announced in November that he was retiring from politics and did not run in the January elections, "will meet with senior administration officials and the heads of the intelligence and defense establishments," according to an announcement Monday by Israel’s government press office.

In a visit to Washington in December, Barak at a news conference with Defense Secretary Leon Panetta made clear that he thought it would be his last as defense minister.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who was reelected with a bare majority on Jan. 22, is struggling to cobble together a governing coalition.

Haaretz reported that Israel’s National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror and Netanyahu special envoy Isaac Molho are scheduled to visit Washington later this week as part of the advance team preparing for President Obama’s trip to Israel next month.

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