Barack Obama holds talks with the Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu in private as the go-ahead is given to more controversial appartments in East Jerusalem.
Obama and Netanyahu held talks for 90 minutes in the Oval Office, but there was no comment from either side as to what was discussed.
The Israeli prime minister remained in the White House for a further two hours after his formal talks, but there was no explanation what he was doing during this time.
The media was not invited to film the two men begin their talks, in a break with custom, highlighting the serious strain in relations between the White House and the US's long term ally Israel.
Netanyahu's spokesman Nir Chefetz said in a statement several hours after the meeting ended: "President Obama and the prime minister met privately for an hour and a half, the atmosphere was good."
He said the two leaders' advisers "continued discussions on the ideas raised at the meeting" and would hold further talks on Wednesday.
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