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Mon Feb 11, 2013 5:5PM
Israeli Minister for Military Affairs Ehud Barak

Israeli Minister for Military Affairs Ehud Barak

Israeli Minister for Military Affairs Ehud Barak has made a surprise visit to the United States, days before top Netanyahu aids' trip to the country. According to a report published by the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, the outgoing minister has left for Washington on Monday. Barak’s office said the minister is planning to meet with senior officials in the Pentagon and the US Intelligence Community (IC). However, the real purpose of his trip is still not clear. According to the report, the Israeli minister visits Washington at a strange time when he is planning to retire from politics in just a few weeks. Barak’s trip also comes as Yaakov Amidror and Yitzhak Molcho, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s top advisers, will reportedly travel to Washington later this week to prepare the ground for US President Barack Obama’s first visit to Israel since taking office. On February 5, the White House announced that Obama plans to visit Israel, the West Bank and Jordan this spring, without giving any exact date for the trip. MKA/JR
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