American astronaut Scott Kelly and Minister of Science and Technology Ofir Akunis at the opening of Space Week.
(photo credit: GILAD KAVALERCHIK)
Ofir Akunis (Likud) will be the first Israeli Science, Technology and Space Minister to be invited to the White House next week.
Akunis will be a guest of meteorologist Kelvin Droegemeier, who is US President Donald Trump’s adviser on science. This is the first time that an Israeli scientist has been invited to the White House as part of his professional role.
“The meeting in the White House is another expression of the excellent relationship between Israel and the United States, which reaches all-time highs,” Akunis said. “The two countries cooperate in a wide range of fields, and we are also deepening the connection in the fields of science, technology and innovation.”
The meeting at the White House is expected to take place parallel to a meeting between Trump and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu next week.
In addition to the meeting at the White House, the science minister will hold meetings with the NASA chief and the head of the National Science Foundation in Washington
The invitation comes after Akunis oversaw the launch of Israel’s first spacecraft “Beresheet” to the moon, which has been dubbed one of the most significant national and historic events in the history of the state.
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