Based on a transcript of the conversation, obtained by Israel’s channel 1, Obama “behaved in a rude, condescending and hostile manner,” the network’s foreign correspondent concluded.
During the 35-minute conversation on Sunday, the president reportedly demanded that Israel should immediately and unconditionally end the operation.
When Netanyahu asked what Israel would get in return for unilaterally ending the strikes, Obama replied: “I believe Hamas will stop firing rockets – quiet in return for quiet.” To which Netanyahu responded that Hamas has already violated 5 cease-fires and is committed to the destruction of Israel.
“I repeat and expect Israel to stop all of its actions against Hamas in Gaza,” Obama said. He added that despite Netanyahu’s objections the United States trusts Qatar and Turkey’s mediation. “Israel is not in a situation that it can choose its mediators,” the president told his Israeli counterpart.
Netanyahu in response: “Hamas will continue firing rockets on Israel and use their tunnels to attack our people.”
At this point, Obama interrupted the Israeli leader, stating, “the ball is in Israel’s court, and it must end all military activities.”
UPDATE 15:00: The State Department spokesperson told BBC reporter Paul Danahar that if President Obama’s conversation with Prime Minister Netanyahu was indeed leaked to Israel’s Channel 1, it would be a “severe violation of a private discussion.”
UPDATE 15:20: NSC Spokesperson Meehan says Channel 1’S report of transcript of Obama-Netanyahu conversation doesn’t “bear any resemblance to reality.. Shocking that someone would sink to misrepresenting private conversations between PM and POTUS in fabrications in Israeli press.” [via Twitter]
“This “transcript of POTUS-PM call” report is totally false,” Ben Rhodes tweeted.