Netanyahu at White House after Obama challenge

May 20, 2011 - 3:45 AM
Obama Mideast

President Barack Obama shakes hands with audience members after he delivered his Middle East speech at the State Department in Washington, Thursday, May 19, 2011. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is set to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (neh-ten-YAH'-hoo) a day after challenging the Israeli leader to cede more territory than he wants to in pursuit of peace with the Palestinians.

That could make for a tense encounter when Netanyahu comes to the White House on Friday.

In a speech Thursday, Obama called for a Palestinian state next to Israel based on the borders that existed before the 1967 Six Day War in which Israeli forces occupied east Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza. Netanyahu said that would be "indefensible."

Obama wants Israel and the Palestinians to restart stalled peace talks and is certain to push Netanyahu on the issue. But numerous barriers stand in the way.