U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton arrived in Israel on Sunday for meetings with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other top officials, tweeting upon his arrival that he was “looking forward” to the talks on “bilateral concerns and a range of national security issues.”
The talks are expected to focus on Iran and Syria.
This is Bolton's first trip to Israel since assuming his new position in April, though he has been in the country on numerous occasions in other capacities. Bolton is scheduled to meet Netanyahu Sunday evening for dinner at the prime minister's official residence in Jerusalem, and again at the Prime Minister's office Monday morning.
Following his brief visit here, Bolton is scheduled to travel to Geneva for talks with Russian officials, including his counterpart Nikolai Patrushev, to follow up the summit last month between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki. He is also scheduled to travel to Ukraine for talks there as well.
The situation in Syria was high on the agenda of the Trump-Putin talks last month. Israeli officials have said that Jerusalem is closely coordinated with Washington regarding its position on Syria, which is that ultimately Iranian forces and their Shia-backed militias must leave the country. The Russians say that they have moved the Iranian and Shia forces 85 kilometers from the border with Israel.
Bolton is considered a strong supporter of Israel. He is a loud advocate of stopping what he has called Iran's “malign” influence in the region, a strong voice against what he terms the “horrible” Iranian nuclear deal, and adamantly in favor of renewed US sanctions on Iran to weaken its economy.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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