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Biden said due in Israel on June 23, will meet PM, Abbas, tour E. Jerusalem hospital

US president to visit as part of planned trip to the Middle East including Saudi Arabia; will reportedly meet Bennett and Herzog in Jerusalem, Abbas in Bethlehem, go to Yad Vashem

US President Joe Biden salutes as he boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland, June 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
US President Joe Biden salutes as he boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland, June 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

US President Joe Biden will arrive in Israel on June 23 as part of a planned trip to the Middle East, Hebrew media outlets reported Friday.

The White House has yet to release the dates for Biden’s trip, which was announced after a phone call with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett in April.

According to the Ynet news site, Biden will tour an Iron Dome anti-missile battery after touching down at Ben Gurion Airport, before heading to Jerusalem. In the capital, he is expected to visit the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Museum and hold meetings with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and President Isaac Herzog.

The next day, he is reportedly going to visit a hospital in East Jerusalem before heading to the West Bank city of Bethlehem to meet Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

He will then continue on his trip, which will include a stop in Saudi Arabia.

The planned visit will come as the Israeli government teeters after losing its parliamentary majority, though the White House reportedly informed the Prime Minister’s Office that the trip was still on despite the political turmoil in Israel.

Preparations for the trip are already underway, including security coordination between Israeli and US officials. On Tuesday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said a US delegation would be dispatched to meet with Palestinian officials to discuss Biden’s trip.

Biden last visited Israel as vice president in 2016. Bennett met with Biden at the White House in August.

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