UPDATE 4-Netanyahu cancels trip to Obama's nuclear summit

Fri Apr 9, 2010 6:21am GMT

* Netanyahu fears Islamic ambush at conference

* Sends a deputy in his place to Washington

* Republicans say Obama is snubbing Israel

(Adds background, Netanyahu quotes)

By Douglas Hamilton and Dan Williams

JERUSALEM, April 9 (Reuters) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has cancelled a planned trip to Washington next week for President Barack Obama's 47-country nuclear security conference.

He made the decision after learning Egypt and Turkey intended to raise the issue of Israel's assumed atomic arsenal at the meeting, a senior government official said on Friday.

Israel is believed to be the only nuclear-armed power in the Middle East, but has never confirmed or denied it. It has not signed the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).   Continued...

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