Netanyahu shares Syria concerns in call with Trump


JERUSALEM (JTA) — President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke together by phone.

The call on Wednesday comes as Trump announced that he plans to pull all of the United States’ troops out of Syria, which lies on Israel’s northern border, within six months.

According to a readout of the phone conversation released by the White House, the leaders’ conversation “address[ed] recent developments in the Middle East.  President Trump reiterated the commitment of the United States to Israel’s security and the two leaders agreed to continue their close coordination on countering Iran’s malign influence and destabilizing activities.”

A report of the conversation released by the Prime Minister’s Office said that Netanyahu “thanked President Trump for his commitment to Israel’s security and America’s support for Israel at the United Nations. The two leaders agreed to continue the close coordination between the two states in order to repel Iran’s aggression and its attempts to destabilize the region.”

The Associated Press reported Wednesday, citing two unnamed U.S. officials, that the discussion between the two leaders “grew tense” over Israeli concerns that a U.S. withdrawal from Syria will allow Iran to increase its influence there.

Donald Trump wants out of Syria. Israel thinks that’s a problem.


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