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First Israeli response to Trump leak: US-Israel ties are deep, unprecedented

US President Donald Trump speaking with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Russian Ambassador to the US Sergei Kislyak at the White House in Washington, DC
HO (RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY/AFP)
Israeli officials said the incident confirmed their worst fears

In the first official response from the Israeli government since news broke that US President Donald Trump gave classified information obtained by Israel to Russia, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said on Wednesday that the deep security ties between the two countries will continue.

"The security relationship between Israel and our great ally, the United States, is deep, significant and unprecedented in scope and contribution to our strength," he wrote on Twitter.

Israel's Haaretz newspaper reported on Wednesday that President Trump called Prime Minister Netanyahu on Tuesday, shortly after the US leader spoke with Jordan's King Abdullah II.

Neither Israel nor the US publicized the call.

According to the report, the two leaders only discussed Trump's upcoming visit to the Middle East, and did not talk about the diplomatic spat between the two countries over the status of the Western Wall, or Trump's leaking of Israeli classified information to Russia.

In leaking classified intelligence to Russian officials, US President Donald Trump might have compromised an Israeli plant within the Islamic State terror group, unnamed US officials told ABC News on Tuesday.

Israel was apparently the source of the highly classified information that Donald Trump was accused of disclosing in a meeting with Russian officials on Monday, a current and a former White House official familiar with the situation revealed to the New York Times on Tuesday.

According to the ABC report. the Israeli mole provided intelligence on an IS plot to blow up a passenger jet en route to the US with a bomb smuggled in a laptop. Two Israeli intelligence officers told BuzzFeed on Tuesday that Israel had indeed shared specific information with the US regarding the plot.

SAUL LOEB (AFP/File)

It was based on this intelligence that Washington put in place a ban on taking larger electronic devices to the passenger cabin on flights on US-bound flights from Middle Eastern and European destinations.

The Israeli officials told BuzzFeed that Trump's sharing the information with Russians had Israel's "worst fears confirmed," when it came to sensitive intelligence.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer refused to comment on the New York Times report in a Tuesday press briefing.

"We appreciate the strong relationship that we have with Israel with respect to intelligence sharing," Spicer said.

The bombshell revelation ignited speculations that Israel may cancel Trump's upcoming trip, according to the Jerusalem Post's senior Israeli political correspondent, Lahav Harkov.

However, the Prime Minister's office and foreign ministry declined to comment on both the Times report and the status of his arrival on May 22.

Comments

(1)
stevenl

Fake leak by the US SWAMP.

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