Israel PM Benjamin Netanyahu Calls Off India Visit

New Delhi: Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday called off a visit to India scheduled for next week, just days ahead of the country’s elections, because of “scheduling constraints”.

The day-long visit on September 9 was being seen as a key part of Netanyahu’s campaign for the unprecedented repeat general elections on September 17 after he failed to form a coalition government earlier this year. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has figured prominently, along with US President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin, in posters for Netanyahu’s campaign.

People familiar with developments said Netanyahu called Modi on Tuesday morning to inform him of the change in plans.

Earlier, Netanyahu had also called off a visit that was scheduled to take place before India’s general election held in April-May.

“A short time ago, the prime minister spoke with India’s prime minister. The two agreed, due to scheduling constraints, that the (Israeli) prime minister’s visit would take place after the elections,” Netanyahu’s spokesperson Shir Cohen said in a brief statement sent to the media.

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