Right-wing MKs Apologize to U.S. Envoy Over Leaking of Off-the-record Meeting

One lawmaker told Ambassador Dan Shapiro that U.S. attempt to impose peace plan on Israel constitutes 'use of force that's inappropriate for an ally.'

The leaders of the Knesset's Land of Israel caucus apologized Wednesday to U.S. Ambassador Dan Shapiro because the contents of their off-the-record discussion with him were leaked to the press.

Caucus members attacked Shapiro on Tuesday, accusing him of not being sufficiently sympathetic to Israeli needs.

MKs Yariv Levin (Likud) and Orit Strock (Habayit Hayehudi), the caucus leaders, told Shapiro they "deeply regret that even though the meeting was designated as closed ahead of time, someone present in the room recorded it without permission and leaked the recording to the media," they said in a statement.

A U.S. attempt to impose a peace plan on Israel constitutes "use of force that's inappropriate for an ally," said MK Nissan Slomiansky of Habayit Hayehudi. "It isn't friendly to coerce us into doing things we don't want to."

MK David Rotem of Yisrael Beiteinu asked Shapiro: "When can we depend on you? When did you stand at our side?"

Shapiro accepted the apology and said he thought the meeting was helpful, Levin and Strock said.

The caucus leaders said they thanked the ambassador for "the important meeting and the conversation he is having with the Knesset members."

Moti Milrod