Shortly before his appearance at the 2018 AIPAC Policy Conference, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said hello to the UAE and Bahraini ambassadors to the US—and even shook their hands—in a Washington restaurant, the AP reported Saturday.







Benjamin Netanyahu

Benjamin Netanyahu Photo credit: Amos Ben Gershom/GPO

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu exchanged kind words with the UAE and Bahraini ambassadors to the US while in Washington, DC, in March, according to the Associated Press. The impromptu encounter took place at Cafe Milano, a fancy Italian restaurant in Georgetown that is frequented by Washington’s most powerful.

According to the report, Netanyahu and his wife were enjoying a meal at the restaurant a few hours before the prime minister was scheduled to speak at the 2018 AIPAC Policy Conference. Also present in the restaurant were the two ambassadors, the US State Department’s policy planning chief and several American reporters, who were eating together. When the Americans heard that Netanyahu was also dining there, they sent an unusual inquiry to the prime minister via an unofficial channel—using one of the reporters to pass on the message.

Netanyahu and his wife happily accepted the offer to come by their table and say hello. The AP reported noted that Netanyahu responded to some of the reporters’ questions, which mainly involved Tehran, before shaking hands with the two Arab envoys as they headed out of the venue.

While Israeli and UAE officials refused to confirm that the meeting took place, six people who have knowledge of the encounter shared details about it with the AP.

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