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June 17, 2021 11:36 am

Bennett Invites Germany’s Merkel to Visit Israel

avatar by i24 News

Naftali Bennett, Israeli parliament member from the Yamina party, gives a statement at the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, in Jerusalem, June 6, 2021. Menahem Kahana/Pool via REUTERS

i24 News – Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett on Thursday invited German Chancellor Angela Merkel make an official visit to Israel, after the German leader called to congratulate Bennett on taking office and successfully forming a governing coalition.

Such a visit, Bennett said in his first official conversation with the leader of Germany, would represent an “opportunity to strengthen ties between the countries.”

The premier also praised Germany’s “ongoing commitment to Israeli security” that was evident in Berlin’s support for the Jewish state’s “right to defend itself against Palestinian terrorists in Gaza during last month’s Operation Guardian of the Walls,” which saw thousands of rockets fired from the coastal enclave toward Israel.

“Germany and Israel are connected by a unique friendship that we want to strengthen further,” Merkel said.

The German chancellor, who is bowing out of politics in September after 16 years in power, has been one of the defining figures on the world stage in those years.

Meanwhile, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier will travel to Israel from June 30 to July 2 to hold talks with the new government.

Bennett became Israel’s premier earlier this week after an alliance of parties achieved the considerable feat of ousting Benjamin Netanyahu after 12 years in power and forming a new government.

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