Washington: President Barack Obama told Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday the United States would “reassess” its policy options after the Israeli prime minister took a position against Palestinian statehood during the Israeli election campaign, a White House official said.

The White House earlier issued a statement saying Mr Obama had called Mr Netanyahu to congratulate him on his election win and used the opportunity to reaffirm US commitment to a two-state solution to the Middle East conflict.

US President Barack Obama.

US President Barack Obama. Photo: AP

But the official said Mr Obama also delivered another message. “The president told the prime minister that we will need to reassess our options following the prime minister’s new positions and comments regarding the two state solution,” the official said. “They also discussed Prime Minister Netanyahu’s comments about Israeli Arabs.” 

The US – a veto-wielding member of the UN Security Council – has opposed moves at the UN to recognise a Palestinian state, saying that must be part of a negotiated peace deal.

It has also shielded Israel from often Arab-led UN votes castigating the Jewish state for various actions, including alleged human rights abuses.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures to  supporters as reacts to exit poll figures in Israel's parliamentary elections.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures to supporters as reacts to exit poll figures in Israel’s parliamentary elections. Photo: AFP

Reuters, AFP