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Clinton to meet with Netanyahu

From NBC's Courtney Kube
After the State Department announced that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton would meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at State at 2:45 p.m. today, the meeting was just moved to the nearby Mayflower Hotel.

And, despite the fact the meeting was open to the media, now only "official" media are allowed to cover it.

Asked about the last-minute decision, State Department spokesperson P.J. Crowley said the change in location was the "Israeli's prerogative," and that he "doesn't know why the shift was made."

Crowley warned "not to read too much into" the move, and side-stepped a question about whether the change had anything to do with Clinton's speech to the AIPAC Conference this morning.

At the speech, Clinton condemned new settlements in Jerusalem saying, "New construction in East Jerusalem or the West Bank undermines that mutual trust and endangers the proximity talks," and "it exposes daylight between Israel and the United States that others in the region hope to exploit."

Making these statements to the powerful Israeli lobbying group, Clinton said that "as Israel's friend, it is our responsibility to give credit when it is due and to tell the truth when it is needed."

While Crowley denied that Clinton's strong statements impacted the Israeli's decision on today's meeting with the U.S. Secretary of State, Crowley did admit that the Israelis did NOT receive a copy of Clinton's speech before this morning's event. They did not know what she would say about settlements.