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Netanyahu heads to US to discuss AI initiatives, 'Iran and expanding the circle of peace'

Most important part of the Israeli premier's trip is his long-awaited meeting with Biden

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife, Sara, departure on a diplomatic trip to the US, Sept. 18, 2023 (Photo: Avi Ohayon/GPO)

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu began his trip to the United States early on Monday with a flight from Ben-Gurion International Airport to San Francisco, California amid protests both in Israel and the US.

The most important event during Netanyahu’s trip will be his long-awaited meeting with U.S. President Joe Biden.

“I will also meet with many world leaders, especially President Biden, with whom I will discuss – first and foremost, but among other topics – Iran and expanding the circle of peace,” Netanyahu told the press before boarding his plane.

However, Netanyahu’s schedule includes a number of other interesting meetings.

While in San Francisco, the prime minister will visit Silicon Valley to meet with a group of leaders in the field of Artificial Intelligence, as he has spoken numerous times about his desire to make Israel a world-leading power in the field of AI.

He will also meet with the owner of Tesla and X, formerly Twitter, Elon Musk, to discuss AI initiatives in Israel and encourage the business magnate to invest in Israel.

“I will discuss artificial intelligence with [Musk] and I will also work toward encouraging him to invest in Israel in the coming years. He is, to a large degree, paving the way that will change the face of humanity and also the face of the State of Israel. Israel needs to be a leader in artificial intelligence. Just as we turned it into a leader in cyber, so we will do in this field as well,” the prime minister said prior to his departure.

Netanyahu is scheduled to fly to New York on Monday evening to prepare for the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), where he will reportedly meet with a number of world leaders on the sidelines of the event.

“I must say that it is moving to see the many requests for meetings," Netanyahu said. "Unfortunately, I cannot meet with all the leaders who made requests but I hope to meet with most of them."

One meeting on Netanyahu's agenda is with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. This will be the first in-person meeting between the two leaders since the prime minister resumed office last December, despite repeated invitations extended by Zelenskyy.

Other important meetings on the agenda include meetings with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, South Korea’s President Yoon Suk Yeol, UN Sec.-Gen. António Guterres, as well as Paraguay’s President Santiago Peña, whose country recently announced it would move its embassy to Jerusalem.

On Friday, Netanyahu is expected to address the UNGA, before returning to Israel on Sunday, where he is scheduled to land just hours before the closure of Ben-Gurion Airport for Yom Kippur.

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

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