NEW YORK — Republican Mitt Romney is criticizing President Barack Obama for not planning to meet in person with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu next week, calling it "confusing and troubling."
Romney said at a New York fundraiser Friday that Israel is America's "closest ally" and "best friend in the Middle East." He urged Obama to meet with Netanyahu surrounding the start of United Nations General Assembly meetings next week.
The White House has denied published reports that Obama had rejected Netanyahu's request for a meeting with the president in Washington next week, saying no such request was made or rejected.
The White House says Obama and Netanyahu spoke for an hour Tuesday night and reaffirmed their countries' commitment to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.