Netanyahu: Trump 'feels very warmly' about Israel

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump at Trump Tower on Sept. 25, 2016.

Story highlights

  • "I think his attitude, his support for Israel is clear," Netanyahu says about Trump
  • Netanyahu made a stir in the US when he spoke negatively about the Iran nuclear deal before Congress

Washington (CNN)Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has a positive outlook on the future of US-Israeli relations under President-elect Donald Trump.

In a "60 Minutes" interview Sunday evening, Netanyahu told interviewer Lesley Stahl that he is excited to work with Trump going forward.
"I know Donald Trump. I know him very well. And I think his attitude, his support for Israel is clear," Netanyahu says. "He feels very warmly about the Jewish state, about the Jewish people and about Jewish people. There's no question about that."
    Netanyahu went on to admit that he had a difference of opinion with current President Barack Obama, specifically concerning the Iran nuclear deal. However, he insisted that the tension was never personal.
    "I think that suppose we had the greatest of personal chemistry, OK? So, what? You think I wouldn't stand up against the Iran deal if I thought, as I did, that it endangers the existence of Israel? Of course I would."
    Netanyahu made a stir in the United States last year when he spoke negatively about the deal before Congress.
    The Prime Minister told "60 Minutes" he is planning on meeting with Trump soon to discuss ending the Iran nuclear pact, which Trump has called "stupid" and a "disgrace," and pursuing other options. But Gen. James Mattis, Trump's choice for secretary of defense, cautions against withdrawing from the deal.
    Israel's place in the world has shifted under Netanyahu's tenure, with the country aligning itself with more Arab nations than ever before. Notably, the relationship between Israel and Russia has been a source of concern for America. But Netanyahu assured the interviewer that they are not becoming anti-America, a nation he calls "an irreplaceable ally."
    "You have relations with Russia and you have relations with China. We can have relations, economic relations, trade relations with other countries as you do. Why not?" he asked.