US military chief to meet with Ashkenzai

In a sign of the bolstering ties between the United States and Israel, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen will pay a lightning visit to Israel Sunday on his way back to the US from meetings in Afghanistan and Pakistan, the IDF' Spokeperson's Unit announced Saturday.


Mullen will meet IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, who he has met 14 times since both took up their posts in 2007, and will then have lunch with additional IDF generals including the head of Military Intelligence, commander of the Navy and the deputy chief of staff.


Sunday’s trip will be Mullen’s fourth visit to Israel. Before his first visit in 2007, a chairman of the joint chiefs had not visited Israel in a decade.


Officials said that the two military chiefs would focus on Iran’s nuclear program in their discussions as well as the situation in Syria and Lebanon.

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