The White House said US President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu discussed regional security and the Middle East peace process on the phone Wednesday during the latter’s trip to China. The two leaders agreed to continue their "close coordination." DEBKAfile: Israel’s air strikes on Syria were aired in the conversation and their implications for Washington’s next steps on that issue. Two days ago, President Vladimir Putin called Netanyahu while he was touring Shanghai.

In Rome, US Secretary of State John Kerry met Justice Minister Tzipi Livni and Netanyahu’s senior adviser Yakov Molcho. He is due in Israel and Ramallah in two weeks’ time to follow his initiative for a peace push.