update deskU.S.-Israel Relations

Nixing delegation to DC is ‘a message to Hamas,’ Netanyahu tells US senator

“I thought the U.S. decision in the Security Council was a very, very bad move,” the Israeli prime minister told Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) in Jerusalem.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) in Jerusalem on March 27, 2024. Credit: Haim Zach/GPO.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) in Jerusalem on March 27, 2024. Credit: Haim Zach/GPO.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) for his “unwavering support for the State of Israel, especially at this time” during the latter’s visit to Jerusalem, per Netanyahu’s office.

The two officials met at the prime minister’s office in Jerusalem on Wednesday.

Netanyahu told Scott that Washington’s decision to abstain, rather than veto, a recent ceasefire resolution at the United Nations Security Council “was a very, very bad move.”

“The worst part about it was that it encouraged Hamas to take a hard line and to believe that international pressure will prevent Israel from freeing the hostages and destroying Hamas,” the prime minister told the senator, per an Israeli read out of the meeting.

Netanyahu Rick Scott
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) in Jerusalem on March 27, 2024. Credit: Haim Zach/GPO.

Netanyahu also addressed a scheduled Israeli ministerial delegation to Washington, which he canceled following the U.N. vote.

“My decision not to send the delegation to Washington in the wake of that resolution was a message to Hamas: ‘Don’t bet on this pressure. It’s not going to work,'” Netanyahu told Scott. “I hope they got the message.”

JNS sought comment from the senator’s office.

“I will fight every dime to the U.N. Biden and the U.N. might be too weak to stand up to Iran/Hamas, but I will never be afraid to stand with our greatest ally, Israel,” Scott wrote on social media on Tuesday, about the U.N. resolution that the Biden administration allowed to pass.

“The U.N. has a long record of siding with dictators and terrorists and our dollars should not fund its nonsense,” he added.

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