Stories by Barak Ravid of Israel's Channel 13 news

Trump's Middle East envoy to meet Benny Gantz

Benny Gantz
Benny Gantz. Photo: Amir Levy/Getty Images

Jason Greenblatt, President Trump's Middle East envoy, plans to meet next week with Benny Gantz, the leader of the Blue and White Party that won this week's Israeli elections, Blue and White officials tell me.

Why it matters: This will be the first time a senior White House official meets Gantz since he entered politics a year ago, and the first recognition of Gantz as an important political player in Israel.

Trump's Middle East envoy meets with Netanyahu after election loss

Jason Greenblatt and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in 2017. Photo: Amos Ben Gershom/GPO/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Jason Greenblatt, President Trump's envoy for Middle East peace, met in Jerusalem Friday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The backdrop: As had been expected, Netanyahu failed to win a parliamentary majority as the final results of Israel's elections were published this morning.

Trump after Netanyahu election setback: Our relations are with Israel

Trump and Netnyahu at the White House. Photo: Michael Reynolds - Pool/Getty Images

President Trump appeared to distance himself from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today after the latter’s failure to win a parliamentary majority in Tuesday’s elections.

What he's saying: Trump told reporters in California that he hasn’t spoken yet to Netanyahu about the election results and stressed that his administration's relations “are with Israel." Those cool remarks are a blow to Netanyahu, who is fighting for his political survival.