'Israel owes debt of gratitude to US,' Ya'alon says on eve of Washington trip

Against the backdrop of continuing tensions with the Obama administration over the stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace process, Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon is scheduled to depart late Saturday for a five-day visit to the United States, his office announced.
Ya'alon is scheduled to meet with his American counterpart, Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel, as well as other military and defense officials in Washington.
The defense minister is also due to hold working visits with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, US ambassador to the UN Samantha Power, and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio.
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