Biden on Mideast Trip: Goal to ‘Deepen Israeli Integration in Region’
i24 News – US President Joe Biden on Thursday previewed his upcoming trip to the Middle East, saying that the aim of visiting Israel and Saudi Arabia is to “deepen Israel’s integration in the region.”
The president made the remarks during a press conference in Madrid at the end of the NATO summit.
He is scheduled to visit Israel, the West Bank and Saudi Arabia on his first Mideast swing since taking office from July 13 to 16.
“I’m going to Israel to meet with Israeli leaders to affirm the unbreakable bond Israel and the United States have. And part of the purpose is — the trip to the Middle East — is to deepen Israel’s integration in the region, which I think we’re going to be able to do and which is good — good for peace and good for Israeli security. And that’s why Israel leaders have come out so strongly for my going to Saudi,” Biden said.
He also said that one of the aims of the trip is to “try to reduce the deaths” in the Yemen civil war.
While in Israel, Biden is expected to meet with incoming prime minister Yair Lapid, who will assume office at midnight from Thursday to Friday after Thursday’s vote to dissolve Israel’s parliament, the Knesset.
With snap elections scheduled for November, Biden will also reportedly meet with leader of the opposition, Benjamin Netanyahu. The head of Likud could become prime minister depending on the election results and the ability to form a government.