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First-ever official visit to Azerbaijan by an Israeli president, leaders to discuss strategic relationship

The two nations' health ministers are also expected to sign a cooperation agreement

Israeli President Isaac Herzog speaks during an event for outstanding soldiers as part of Israel's 75th Independence Day celebrations, at the President's residence in Jerusalem, April 26, 2023. (Photo: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

For the first time in history, an Israeli president will pay an official state visit to the Republic of Azerbaijan, a Muslim-majority nation.

The two-day visit will commence on Tuesday, when Israeli President Isaac Herzog will meet with Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev reportedly to discuss strategic relations related to Iran, which shares a border with Azerbaijan.

Aliyev recently invited Herzog to Azerbaijan’s capital Baku, as relations between the two countries have become even warmer in recent months.

In addition to discussing strategic relations, the visit is scheduled to include an official welcome with an honor guard at the presidential palace, as well as a meeting with local Jewish community leaders and a celebration of Israel’s 75 years of independence.

Herzog and his wife Michal will be accompanied by Israeli Health Minister Moshe Arbel, who will reportedly meet with his Azerbaijan counterpart, Dr. Teymur Musayev, about possibilities for collaborating on healthcare issues, include the training of doctors, preparation for disasters and digital healthcare. The two health ministers are also expected to sign a cooperation agreement.

Azerbaijan opened its first embassy in Tel Aviv in March, while Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen visited Azerbaijan in April to open Israel’s first embassy there.

“Azerbaijan is a strategic partner of Israel due to its geographical location and the fact that it is a Muslim-Shiite country that opened an embassy in Israel,” Cohen said at the time.

Israel and Azerbaijan have become closer allies in recent years, cooperating in trade, energy solutions and defense. Azerbaijan also supplies 30% of Israel’s oil.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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