Jerusalem, Undefined | AFP |
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday chided a cabinet colleague who failed to give him public praise for pushing through a long-sought offshore gas deal.
After ministers approved revisions to the agreement with a US-led consortium designed to overcome a court challenge, Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz named several officials he credited with redrafting the document.
But he did not include Netanyahu on the list.
“Maybe there was someone else who contributed,” Netanyahu said in a comment picked up by media microphones and broadcast on public radio and news websites.
Steinitz appeared not to get the hint.
“I was just referring to those who did the work over the past few days,” he said.
Netanyahu did not give up.
“There was one other person,” he told the hapless minister.
“Perhaps also the prime minister?”
Netanyahu pushed hard for the deal with Texas-based Noble Energy and Israel’s Delek as it came under fire from political opponents, social activists and anti-trust officials.
He made a rare personal appearance in Israel’s supreme court to argue for the agreement, but the justices in March struck it down, objecting to a clause which guaranteed that its provisions could not be changed for a decade.