President Isaac Herzog welcomes Latvia’s President Egils Levits to the President’s Residence in Jerusalem for a state visit marking 30 years of diplomatic relations.
“We have built a warm partnership based on shared values and common interests,” says Herzog, whose grandmother was born in Riga. “Israel places great importance on continuing to enhance and deepen our bilateral relations with Latvia as well as all three Baltic states.”
Herzog says the leaders would focus on trade, commerce, joint scientific research, and academic collaboration in their working meeting.
The president also thanks Levits for the February passage by Latvia’s parliament of a Holocaust restitution bill that includes compensation for lost Jewish property and funding to revitalize the Baltic nation’s Jewish community, which was almost completely wiped out during World War II.
Levits then meets with Prime Minister Yair Lapid. According to Levits, the two discuss green energy, IT, and the Middle East peace process.
Their talks also cover Russia’s invasion for Ukraine, an overwhelming concern for Latvia, a tiny NATO nation bordering Russia that spent decades as part of the Soviet Union.
Latvia is also a member of the European Union.
“I appreciate the Prime Minister’s role in intensifying the European Union-Israel dialogue,” Levits tweets.
Herzog and first lady Michal Herzog will host a state dinner tonight for Levits and his wife.