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Biden’s cropped video clip showing him dozing off triggers verbal war inside Israel

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett with US President Joe Biden (Image courtesy: Twitter/ @IsraeliPM)

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett's first diplomatic visit to Washington last month is in the news once again, though for entirely different reasons.

As a video of US President Joe Biden – apparently showing him fall asleep during his meeting with Bennet – went viral on social media, Former PM Benjamin Netanyahu gave his view on the episode during a Facebook live session.

Replying to a question if he was aware of the Biden-Bennet meeting, Netanyahu chuckled, "I heard. I heard that Biden was very attentive at this meeting. He dropped his head in agreement." The opposition leader also depicted how Biden had apparently fallen asleep.

Netanyahu's Likud party, however, later issued a statement that the former PM was taking a dig at Bennet, and not Biden

"Contrary to the distorted picture broadcast in the media, former Prime Minister Netanyahu did not criticise President Biden, whom he has known and cherished as a friend of Israel for 40 years. His criticism was directed solely at Naftali Bennett who during his visit to the White House spoke at length about nothing," the party said.

A fact check done by Israeli newspaper Haaretz, and also news agency Reuters, has debunked the idea that Biden had dozed off during the meeting. It said that the clip that was shared around was "misleadingly cropped".

Before leaving for Washington, Bennett had called Biden "an old and true friend" of Israel.

"There is a new administration in the US and a new government in Israel, and I am bringing with me from Jerusalem a new spirit of cooperation, which rests on the special and long-standing connection between the two countries," he had said.

Bennet's entourage to the White House also included Israel's head of the National Security Council, the Cabinet Secretary, the head of the Prime Minister's staff, the Prime Minister's Military Secretary, the diplomatic adviser and other senior officials.

The Israeli PM will also be among the 83 world leaders who will be attending the UN General Debate in person, this weekend. 

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