Monthly Archives: August 2021

PM Bennett Arrives In U.S., Meets with Secretary of State Anthony Blinken

By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

Washington — August 25, 2021 … Prime Minister Naftali Bennett made the following remarks today at the start of his meeting with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken:

“I appreciate you taking time in pretty hectic days here in the States. It means a lot.

Israel has no stronger and more reliable ally than the United States of America. From our inception and to this day, especially these days, you are always with us, you have our back and that matters a lot to us.

I can assure you that you’ll find no friend which is more reliable and appreciative than us.

I bring from Israel a new spirit, a spirit of folks who sometimes harbor different opinions but work together in cooperation, in good will, in a spirit of unity and we work hard to find common things that we do agree upon and move forward on it. It seems to be working.

This is the same spirit that I want to bring to our relationship of cooperation, of goodwill, of friendship.

We’re going to be talking about a bunch of issues, primarily how do we fend off and curtail Iran’s pursuit to dominate the region and its race to a nuclear weapon.

We will also talk about regional stability and climate change, which is an issue for all of us.

I’m looking forward to having a very good relationship with you.

I appreciate the time.”

Earlier in the day, Bennett met with US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin. This was their first meeting.

Israel Prime Minister Bennett and Secretary of Defense Austin discussed a series of regional, diplomatic and security issues, especially the ways to block Iran’s regional aggression and the progress of its nuclear program.

Bennett thanked the Secretary of Defense for the close cooperation between Israel and the US in the security sphere and emphasized that he views the continued strengthening of the ties as a matter of utmost importance.

Prime Minister Bennett stressed that alongside the strategic alliance between the US and Israel, Israel will continue to insist on its right to maintain security supremacy in the Middle East and would continue to do everything necessary in this regard.

National Security Council head Dr. Eyal Hulata, the Prime Minister’s Military Secretary, Maj.-Gen. Avi Gil, Israeli Ambassador to the US and the UN Gilad Erdan, Cabinet Secretary Shalom Shlomo, the head of the Prime Minister’s staff, Tal Gan-Tzvi, and diplomatic adviser Shimrit Meir also participated in the meeting.

Israel Foreign Minister Lapid Inaugurates Liaison Office in Morocco

By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

Rabat, Morocco — August 12, 2021 … Israel and Morocco have announced that they will open embassies in each other’s countries in two months. The announcement comes as Israel Foreign Minister Yair Lapid made an historic visit to Rabat today.

Lapid stated that he and Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita agreed to upgrade diplomatic relations, which they restored to the level of liaison offices in December.

Bourita is expected to dedicate the Moroccan Embassy in Israel in October or November, depending on the Covid pandemic. His visit to Israel will be on the first direct Royal Morocco flight to Israel.

“Strategically, what we are creating here and what we are creating in recent months is a diplomatic access,” Lapid explained. “Think of it as a kind of a circle of Israel and Morocco and Egypt and Jordan and in some ways you can say Cyprus and Greece, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates. All of the countries that are religiously moderate with truly infinite economic potential. This creates a pragmatic alternative to religious extremism and builds a constant diplomatic dialogue.”

During his meeting with Bourita on Wednesday, Lapid relayed an invitation from Israel President Isaac Herzog to Moroccan King Muhammad VI to Israel.

“Allow me to express my sincere appreciation for Your Majesty’s decision to establish full diplomatic, peaceful and friendly relations between the Kingdom of Morocco and the State of Israel,” Herzog wrote.

“We are committed to deepening the strength of our relations and hope that they further expand and flourish over time.”

Herzog expressed admiration for the king’s “groundbreaking contribution to Arab-Israeli reconciliation in many countries across our region,” and appreciation for the royal family’s “commitment to guarantee the safety and security of the Jews in your country throughout the years a cherished symbol of solidarity.”

Bourita said that Lapid’s visit “reflects the commitment of our two countries to strengthen our bilateral relations and give them concrete impetus through the establishment of effective cooperation mechanisms.