Outgoing German Chancellor Angela Merkel will travel to Israel on October 10 for a farewell visit, the office of Prime Minister Naftali Bennett confirmed on Sunday, according to i24NEWS.
Merkel will meet President Isaac Herzog and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid during the visit, and is expected to attend a cabinet meeting in Jerusalem.
The chancellor is then scheduled to visit the Yad Vashem holocaust memorial, accompanied by Bennett.
She will also receive an honorary doctorate from the Technion Institute and participate in a panel discussion at the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv.
Merkel was originally scheduled to visit Israel in August, but postponed her visit due to the situation in Afghanistan following the Taliban’s takeover of the country.
Merkel did not participate in last week’s elections, which were won by the center-left Social Democratic Party, while Merkel’s party suffered its worst showing in the post-World War II era.
Merkel called Bennett in June to congratulate him on the formation of a government and assuming office. At the time, Bennett invited Merkel to visit Israel.
While Germany and Israel are considered close allies, Merkel and former Prime MIinster Benjamin Netanyahu had some differences, mostly around the peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA).
Merkel has several times insisted that the “two-state solution” is the best way to end the Israel-PA conflict while criticizing Israel over its construction in Judea and Samaria.
At a Government-to-Government meeting in Berlin in December 2012, Merkel and Netanyahu “agreed to disagree” over Israeli construction in areas the PA claims for a future state.
German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier visited Israel at the end of June, stressing support for the country and pledging to continue to fight against anti-Semitism in Germany.