Top US Diplomat Flies to Israel for Summit with 4 Arab States
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken flies on Saturday to Israel, where he will attend an Israeli-Arab summit during a visit also likely to be dominated by discussions about the Iran nuclear talks and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Blinken will meet Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett on Sunday, the US State Department said. Bennett has been trying to mediate an end to the month-old Ukraine-Russia conflict.
Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid’s office said he would convene Blinken and counterparts from United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and Egypt for an “historic meeting” on Sunday and Monday.
The summit will take place in a luxury hotel in the southern Israeli desert farm collective of Sde Boker, where the country’s founding father and first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, retired and is buried.
Blinken is set to visit the West Bank, Morocco and Algeria in a trip that will also focus on Iran and regional security matters.
He will meet with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, the State Department said in a statement.