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During a four-day trip to Israel and Saudi Arabia, President Biden will focus on securing oil for US gas pipelines, slowing Iran’s nuclear program and strengthening ties with Saudi Arabia.debtdebt…Doug Mills/The New York Times

JERUSALEM – President Biden inaugurated Israel on Wednesday A four-day trip to the Middle East It will focus on trying to slow down Iran’s nuclear program, getting oil to US gas pipelines and improving relations with Saudi Arabia.

Nearly 50 years after he made his first trip to Israel as a newly elected senator, Mr. Biden returned to the presidency for the first time and wasted no time in reaffirming his staunch support for the Jewish state. Negotiations on a new nuclear deal with Iran.

“Because the connection between the people of Israel and the people of America runs deep, every opportunity to trace the ancient roots of the Jewish people back to this great land of pre-biblical times is a blessing,” said Mr. Biden said during a brief visit. Ceremony at Ben Gurion Airport. “Generation after generation, that connection grows.”

Mr. Gould often claims he knows every Israeli prime minister since Golda Meir, whom he met on his first visit in 1973. Biden made his 10th visit to Israel. His predecessor, President Donald J. Gives less support to the country than Trump.

“Our relationship is deeper than it has ever been in my view,” said Mr. Biden said.

Greeting him as he disembarked from Air Force One, Israeli leaders echoed that sentiment, as they greeted Mr. President Isaac Herzog called him “our brother Joseph” and declared, “You are truly in the family.” The country’s interim prime minister, Yair Lapid, called him “a great Zionist and one of the best friends Israel has ever known.”

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“It’s a very personal visit,” said Mr. Lapid said, “Because your relationship with Israel has always been personal. You once defined yourself as a Zionist. You said you don’t have to be Jewish to be a Zionist. You’re right.”

The two leaders will discuss joint efforts to promote cooperation between Iran and the Middle East, Mr. Lapid confirmed. After being isolated in the region, Israel has become increasingly involved in regional diplomacy Major Diplomatic Treaties with Three Arab countries In 2020 – and Mr. Officials hope more progress will be made during Biden’s visit.

Mr. Biden also touched on another potential area of ​​tension, reiterating his support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“We will discuss my continued support, and while I know this is not in a new era, the two-state solution in my view is the best way to ensure a future of equal freedom, prosperity and democracy for Israelis. The Palestinians are the same,” Mr. Biden said.

Before his arrival, the Israeli government made several small gestures toward the Palestinians, including granting some new work permits to Gazans. But Mr. Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the Palestinian Authority in Bethlehem, is seeking to restore communications that were severed during Trump’s presidency. While Biden will meet, there is some expectation that the visit will bring progress in resolving the dispute.

Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s longest-serving prime minister, cut a peripheral figure at the reception. Now out of office, he will hold only a brief meeting with the President on Thursday as he is the Leader of the Opposition.

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But Mr. Mr. Biden also has a warm relationship that goes back four decades, and the U.S. president posed with Mr. Mr. Biden gave Mr Netanyahu a long, warm handshake, and the two looked happy to see each other.

The president’s visit comes at a delicate moment in Israeli politics. A weak ruling coalition Recently collapsedMr. Mr. Netanyahu is expected to return until the November elections. Lapid served as caretaker prime minister.

At the end of the reception, Mr. Lapid said his and Mr. Biden joked about their respective paths.

He is Mr. Said to Biden: “I don’t know if you remember, but we met in the White House eight years ago when you were vice president. You said to me, ‘If I had hair like yours, I’d be president,’ and I said, ‘If I were only your height, I’d be prime minister.’ I will be’ I replied.

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