LONDON - Top aides to Britain's Prince Charles privately say there is no chance the prince will ever visit Israel because it would boost the image of the Jewish state.
Deputy private secretary Clive Alderton made the observation in response to an internal e-mail from principal private secretary Sir Michael Peat, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported Friday.
Private e-mails dealing with the matter were published in London's Jewish Chronicle Thursday, igniting a storm in the Jewish community.
The Times of London reports copies of the e-mails were accidentally sent to outgoing Israeli Ambassador to Britain Zvi Heifetz, the man who issued the invitation to the prince.
In one of the e-mails, Alderton asks Peat if it is "safe to assume there is no chance of this visit ever actually happening" and noting that "acceptance would make it hard to avoid the many ways in which Israel would want HRH (Prince Charles) to help burnish its international image. In which case, let's agree to lower its expectations."
Heifetz says if "that is what is written between two people so close to the prince, it reeks of worse than hypocrisy."
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