Blinken speaks with Lapid, vows support for Israel amid political turmoil




Foreign Minister Yair Lapid spoke on the phone Tuesday with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who promised strong support for Israel as it heads to its fifth election in under four years.

Tuesday’s call was the first between the top diplomats since Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Lapid announced on Monday that they planned to disband their own government.

Once the Knesset’s disbandment is finalized, Lapid will assume the premiership at least until elections, which will likely take place in the fall.

In his call with Lapid, Blinken “underscored our respect for democratic processes and reiterated our unwavering commitment to the strong US-Israel strategic relationship,” State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a statement.

Blinken “emphasized our continuing close coordination on regional and global issues,” he said.

Blinken also confirmed again that US President Joe Biden still plans to visit Israel next month, which US Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides previously said on Monday. If the legislative process moves forward as expected, Lapid will be prime minister when Biden lands in Israel on July 13 for his first visit as president.

Lapid’s office said he and Blinken spoke about Biden’s visit, saying it was “an opportunity to emphasize the president’s deep personal connection to Israel, to America’s commitment to Israel’s security, and to strengthening Israel in the region.”

“The visit has significant implications for the region and for the struggle against Iran, and great potential to significantly upgrade regional stability and security,” Lapid’s office said in a statement.

Lapid said he also updated Blinken on his upcoming trip to Turkey “and on the joint activity with the Turkish government against terrorism.”

Price told reporters earlier on Tuesday, “The strength of our relationship does not depend on who sits in the Oval Office. It doesn’t depend on who sits in the prime minister’s chair in Israel.” The snap election could see a comeback by Benjamin Netanyahu, who had a tense relationship with former US president Barack Obama, under whom Biden was vice president.

An Israeli official told The Times of Israel last week, before the announcement of the Knesset’s disbandment, that while in Israel Biden would meet with Bennett, Lapid, President Isaac Herzog, and Defense Minister Benny Gantz.

It has also been traditional for US presidents to meet with the head of the opposition, particularly during an election cycle. This would mean a potential sit-down between Biden and Netanyahu, who have had a long relationship, albeit with no shortage of political disputes.

Biden is scheduled to spend two days in Israel and the West Bank before stopping in Saudi Arabia to participate in the annual meeting of the GCC+3 with the leaders of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, Iraq, Egypt, and Jordan.


It’s not (only) about you.

Supporting The Times of Israel isn’t a transaction for an online service, like subscribing to Netflix. The ToI Community is for people like you who care about a common good: ensuring that balanced, responsible coverage of Israel continues to be available to millions across the world, for free.

Sure, we’ll remove all ads from your page and you’ll gain access to some amazing Community-only content. But your support gives you something more profound than that: the pride of joining something that really matters


Join the Times of Israel Community


Join our Community

Already a member? Sign in to stop seeing this


You’re a dedicated reader

That’s why we started the Times of Israel ten years ago – to provide discerning readers like you with must-read coverage of Israel and the Jewish world.

So now we have a request. Unlike other news outlets, we haven’t put up a paywall. But as the journalism we do is costly, we invite readers for whom The Times of Israel has become important to help support our work by joining The Times of Israel Community.

For as little as $6 a month you can help support our quality journalism while enjoying The Times of Israel AD-FREE, as well as accessing exclusive content available only to Times of Israel Community members.

Thank you,
David Horovitz, Founding Editor of The Times of Israel


Join Our Community


Join Our Community

Already a member? Sign in to stop seeing this

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*