Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has forbidden his cabinet from seeking contact with US president-elect Donald Trump's team, according to Israeli press reports.
The message was circulated on 21 November by cabinet secretary Tzachi Braverman in an attempt to coordinate the Israeli government's priorities in dealing with the new US administration.
"I would like to inform you that by the directive of the prime minister, the ministers and deputy ministers are required to not make any contact with the incoming US administration, other than through the prime minister's office or the Israeli Embassy in Washington," the directive read.
Netanyahu had already ordered his ministers to refrain from talking about Trump's victory in the aftermath of the election result. "I ask every minister and Knesset member to wait until the new administration takes office," he said at a cabinet meeting on 13 November. "We need to formulate a policy together with the new administration via the customary back channels, not via statements to the media."
According to Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Netanyahu made these comments in response to the enthusiastic reaction to Trump's victory by several ministers in his cabinet, including minister of education Naftali Bennett and minister of justice Ayelet Shaked. The pair are also leaders of the far-right nationalist party Jewish Home.
The two ministers said at the time that Trump's victory was an opportunity to remove the two-state solution, which envisions the co-existence of an independent Palestinian State, from the international agenda.
Haaretz reported that Bennett is actively trying to lobby Trump's advisers to refrain from adopting the two-state solution as official US foreign policy.
Bennett was in New York over the weekend for an event hosted by the Zionist Organisation of America, which was also attended by Trump's advisers. Stephen Bannon, the recently nominated chief strategist for the Trump administration, was reportedly expected to join the event, although he eventually did not attend.
After a meeting between Netanyahu and Trump in September, the then-presidential candidate promised that, if elected, he would "recognise Jerusalem as the undivided capital of the State of Israel".