JERUSALEM (JTA) — President Donald Trump appeared to meddle in Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government coalition negotiations.
“Hoping things will work out with Israel’s coalition formation and Bibi and I can continue to make the alliance between America and Israel stronger than ever. A lot more to do!” Trump tweeted on Monday.
“We are shocked by President Trump’s intervention in Israeli domestic politics,” a senior official from the opposition Blue and White Party led by Benny Gantz told Barak Ravid, a senior correspondent with Channel 13.
Ravid in a tweet called Trump’s move “unprecedented,” noting that it was done to help Netanyahu and was done publicly.
Netanyahu referred to Trump’s tweet in a public statement from the Knesset on Monday night. He thanked Trump for the tweet and added: “Trump is right – we still have a lot of work to do.”
Netanyahu used images of him and Trump together on billboards during the last election campaign, Ravid pointed out in a series of tweets. And Trump recognized the Golan Heights as part of Israel two weeks before the April 9 elections, in a move that some said was designed to help Netanyahu.