President Isaac Herzog was received this afternoon with an honor guard by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as part of his visit to the country.
Prior to the meeting, the President laid a wreath at the tomb of the father of modern Turkey Mustafa Kemal Ataturk and toured with his wife the Antakbir Ataturk Museum.
Herzog is the first Israeli leader to visit Turkey since 2008.
Prior to boarding the plane for Turkey, Herzog said, "Together with my wife Michal, I am embarking on a state visit to Turkey at the invitation of President Erdoğan, with whom I have been in dialogue since I entered the Presidency."
“Israel-Turkey relations are important for Israel, important for Turkey, and important for the whole region. And for the first time in many years, there will be a visit to Turkey."
“Certainly at a time when the international order is being shaken, it is good and proper that stability and partnership be maintained in our region, and I emphasized this point during my visits to Greece and Cyprus in recent weeks and in my conversations with leaders."
“We will not agree on everything, and the relationship between Israel and Turkey has certainly known ups and downs and not-so-simple moments in recent years, but we shall try to restart our relations and build them in a measured and cautious manner, and with mutual respect between our states."
“I always emphasize that my vision is that Jews, Muslims, and Christians will live in peace in our region in a manner that will bring them prosperity and perfect lives."
“My visit is completely coordinated with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid and their offices, and I hope that in the wake of my visit, a serious process will begin with Turkey, an in-depth dialogue at various levels, and that ultimately we will see, so I hope, progress in our relations and positive results."
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