Justin Bieber's Diplomacy Troubles in Israel

By Sara Dover
|  Wednesday, Apr 13, 2011  |  Updated 8:42 AM PDT
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The teenage pop sensation found himself caught in politics while on a tour stop in Israel.

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Israel is experiencing a serious case of Bieber Fever this week, but Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu won't be a part of it.

Justin Bieber became embroiled in a diplomatic snafu ahead of a Tel Aviv concert when news emerged that a meeting between the 17-year-old "Baby" singer and Bibi was cancelled. Each side had very different reason why.

Netanyahu's office said they had "received a request" from Biebs' management to meet with the prime minister ahead of his concert on Thursday.  Netanyahu "asked to have children from the south attend the meeting in order to encourage them and create a PR effect," Israeli news site Ynet and The New York Times reported.

The children included those who were on a school bus attacked by a Hamas rocket, injuring a teen and the driver. Netanyahu's office said Bieber's people called the meeting off.

But the Bieber camp paints a different story. Manager Scott Braun told Israeli paper Yedioth Ahronoth  that "we never asked to meet with (Netanyahu) nor has anyone connected with us asked to meet him. Braun also said Bieber was hoping to stay out of politics.

The kids from southern Israel were reportedly unaware of the meeting, but they were given free tickets to the Tel-Aviv show. Bieber's manager said the singer would "love to see them there."

Predictably, Bieber Fever translates into all languages. Ynet reported that Justin originally booked four different hotels in Tel Aviv and one in Jerusalem to escape his fans and pictures show girls going berserk at his presence, per usual. Bieber took to Twitter to complain about aggressive paparazzi.

"i want to see this country and all the places ive dreamed of an whether its the paps or being pulled into politics its been frustrating [sic]," Bieber tweeted on Tuesday.

So far, the star has visited a Tel Aviv beach with his family and posse and plans on touring Jerusalem, the Sea of Galilee, Nazareth and Bethlehem. The trip ends Saturday night.

Selected Reading: The New York Times, Justin Bieber's Twitter, CNN

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