Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is slated to visit San Fransisco and New York from September 18 to 24, so he can address the United Nations during the high-level portion of the opening session of the 78th General Assembly.
His office sent out a brief planning notice about the trip with the dates and locations but did not provide information on who Netanyahu would be meeting.
It is his first trip to the United States since he took office at the end of December. He had initially been expected to travel to Washington shortly after his government was sworn in, for what has become a traditional post-election trip.
US President Joe Biden, however, did not extend an invitation due to tensions between Washington and Jerusalem over Netanyahu’s judicial reform plan, which he has argued would strengthen Israeli democracy and which his opponents fear will turn it into a dictatorship.
The United States has also been frustrated with extremist statements by members of Netanyahu’s coalition and Israel’s continued settlement activity particularly its legalization of West Bank outposts.
Biden and Netanyahu spoke in July and agreed to meet, but no location was given for that future conversation. Netanyahu had insisted that the two would meet in the White House.
Netanyahu Biden expected to meet at UN GA
It is now expected that they will meet on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. Biden is expected to address the UNGA on Tuesday and Netanyahu will arrive in New York on Tuesday morning
The meeting comes as the US and Saudi Arabia are working on a security agreement that would include a normalization deal with Israel. It is also expected that the US will formally accept Israel into its visa waiver program later this month.
Separately while in California, Netanyahu is expected to visit Silicon Valley to help strengthen Israeli ties to the artificial intelligence industry there, according to the Hebrew language news site Ynet. Netanyahu may also meet with Elon Musk, according to media reports.
Reuters contributed to this report.