U.S. Joint Chiefs chairman Dempsey in Israel to brief officials


JERUSALEM (JTA) — U.S. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey arrived in Israel to brief Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot.

It is the first meeting between the two senior military leaders. Eisenkot took over as chief of staff in February, replacing Lt. Gen Benny Gantz.

Dempsey will meet with senior Israeli and U.S. officials during his visit, the IDF said in a statement. He reportedly will meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon.

Meanwhile, the Israeli daily Haaretz reported that Central Intelligence Agency Director John Brennan came to Israel for a secret visit last week to discuss the agreement between Iran and the world powers on a deal regarding Iran’s nuclear program. Haaretz cited two unnamed senior Israeli officials in the report published on Tuesday.

Brennan was the guest of the Mossad secret service head Tamir Pardo and also met with Israeli intelligence officials in a visit that Haaretz reported had been pre-planned.

The CIA did not confirm the visit.

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