Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s Prime Minister, embarked on a U.S. visit early Monday, flying to San Francisco from Israel’s Ben-Gurion International Airport amid demonstrations in both nations. A pivotal part of his itinerary is a much-anticipated discussion with President Joe Biden.
Speaking to the media before his departure, Netanyahu shared, “My agenda includes discussions with numerous global dignitaries, most notably President Biden. Topics will range from Iran to expanding peaceful alliances.”
Netanyahu’s trip isn’t just about diplomatic discussions. He’s slated to engage with Silicon Valley leaders in San Francisco, emphasizing Israel’s aspirations to become a forefront player in Artificial Intelligence (AI). Notably, he’ll confer with Tesla and X’s Elon Musk regarding AI initiatives and possible investments in Israel.
“Our dialogues with Musk will revolve around AI. We aim to persuade him to invest more in Israel over the upcoming years. His pioneering efforts are revolutionizing global scenarios and Israel’s trajectory. We envision Israel as a trailblazer in AI, similar to our achievements in cybersecurity,” Netanyahu expressed.
Later on Monday, the prime minister will head to New York, gearing up for the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). He’s expected to interact with several world leaders on the UNGA’s fringes. Commenting on the keen interest in bilateral talks, he remarked, “It’s heartening to see the plethora of meeting requests. While I can’t honor all, I aim to engage with the majority.”
A notable appointment is with Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, marking their first face-to-face since Netanyahu’s recent term commencement, despite Zelenskyy’s persistent invitations.
The prime minister’s packed schedule also lists sessions with leaders such as Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Germany’s Chancellor Olaf Scholz, South Korea’s President Yoon Suk Yeol, U.N. Sec.-Gen. António Guterres, and Paraguay’s President Santiago Peña. Notably, Paraguay recently declared its embassy’s relocation to Jerusalem.
Netanyahu is set to address the UNGA on Friday and will head back to Israel on Sunday, anticipated to touch down right before Yom Kippur’s observance begins at Ben-Gurion Airport.