- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has canceled his scheduled trip to the U.N. General Assembly gathering next week in New York after his party failed to secure a majority in this week’s presidential election, putting his own political future in doubt.

A spokesperson for Mr. Netanyahu said he is not planning to attend the gathering of global leaders due to “political circumstances,” according to Israeli newspaper Haaretz.

At least 91% of the votes have been counted in Israel and the results show that neither Mr. Netanyahu’s Likud party nor has the center-left Blue and White party can form a majority.

Mr. Netanyahu, who served as prime minister for the past decade, has refused to concede in the contentious election. He has often given provocative presentations from the U.N. podium, warning about the dangers posed by Iran’s nuclear programs.

His decision closely followed an announcement from Iranian President Hassan Rouhani who has threatened to skip the major meeting at the U.N. in New York stemming from weekend attacks on the Saudi oil industry for which the U.S. has pinned responsibility on Tehran.

Iranian news agency IRNA reported Wednesday that Mr. Rouhani has not received a travel visa yet from the U.S. government and may skip the gathering altogether.

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