EFEWashington

Susan Rice, a top adviser to President Barack Obama, called the visit that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will make to Washington to address Congress next week "destructive" for the bilateral relationship.

The visit, which comes in response to an invitation Republican congressional leaders extended to the Israeli leader without first consulting with the Obama administration, "injected a degree of partisanship, which is not only unfortunate. I think it's destructive of the fabric of the relationship," Rice said on the "Charlie Rose" television interview show.

The bilateral relationship between Washington and Tel Aviv has "always been bipartisan. We need to keep it that way. We want it that way. I think Israel wants it that way. The American people want it that way. And when it becomes injected or infused with politics, that's a problem," said Rice.

In a clear challenge to Obama and without consulting with him, Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner in January proposed to Netanyahu that he address a joint session of Congress and the Israeli leader accepted.

Netanyahu is scheduled to speak before Congress - where both chambers are controlled by the Republicans - on March 3 and he will also attend the annual conference of AIPAC, the main pro-Israel pressure group in the United States.

Obama is not scheduled to meet with Netanyahu during his stay in Washington, saying that he considers it to be "inappropriate" due to the closeness of the Israeli parliamentary elections, which will be held on March 17.

In addition, Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State John Kerry will both be traveling abroad during the time Netanyahu is in the United States.

The administration has still not announced who it will send to the AIPAC conference.

In the final stretch of the Group 5+1 negotiations with Iran on its nuclear program, it is expected that Netanyahu will focus his speech before Congress on calling for more severe sanctions on Tehran.

Meanwhile, several Democratic lawmakers have said that they will not attend Netanyahu's speech and the Israeli leader has refused an invitation to meet in private with senators from that party.