JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his trip to the United States is “a very important visit,” prior to boarding his plane.
“I am going there on behalf of all citizens of Israel, as I understand it, to achieve three goals: Security, peace and economic prosperity for all citizens of Israel, for our country,” Netanyahu said late on Saturday night in a statement issued by his office.
“I will meet with a very great friend of Israel, and my personal friend, U.S. President Donald Trump. First of all, I will thank him for the historic decision to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem on Independence Day. This is a very big present for our country,” Netanyahu said.
Netanyahu said he will discuss several issues with Trump, the most important being Iran: “its aggression, its nuclear aspirations, and its aggressive actions in the Middle East in general and on our borders, all of them, in particular.”
“I think that the need to rebuff this aggression is a common goal for us and for nearby countries in the region, but first of all it is ours, that of all Israelis,” he said.
Netanyahu is expected to visit the White House on Monday, where he is scheduled to meet with Trump, as well as senior administration staff, including Trump’s advisor and Jewish son-in-law Jared Kushner, who is involved in efforts to restart the Israel-Palestinian peace process.
On Tuesday he will address the annual AIPAC policy conference. He is scheduled to attend events in New York later in the week before returning on Thursday.