The schedule of US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s visit to Israel has changed slightly, apparently due to mass protests planned for tomorrow over the government’s judicial overhaul.
Austin was initially slated to arrive in Israel later today. Instead, an updated schedule from the Defense Ministry says he will arrive early tomorrow morning.
Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and Austin will meet and issue a statement to the press at the Israel Aerospace Industries headquarters, adjacent to Ben Gurion Airport, instead of a more typical location, such as the defense minister’s office at the military headquarters in Tel Aviv.
The move is thought to be related to tomorrow’s “national day of resistance.” Protesters are expected to block the entrance to the airport, as well as other main roads across the country. The IAI headquarters are accessible from the airport itself.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is also slated to depart from Ben Gurion Airport tomorrow for a trip to Italy. He will reportedly travel by helicopter from Jerusalem to the airport to avoid the road closures by protesters.