Obama, Netanyahu hope for direct talks with Palestinians
Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday said it is "high time" for direct talks with the Palestinians, after holding talks with US President Barack Obama at the White House. The Israeli leader also said reports of the demise of the US-Israeli relationship were "flat wrong".
On his part, Obama said the bond between the two countries was "unbreakable". The American president said he wanted to see direct Middle East peace talks resume before an Israeli settlement freeze expires in late September.
He also said he believed Netanyahu would "take risks for peace" and hailed him for lifting restrictions on the Gaza Strip.
Obama also promised that the US would continue to put pressure on Iran over its nuclear programme as Netanyahu called for "much tougher" sanctions against Tehran.