General Michael E. Kurilla and Lieutenant General Herzi Halevi
General Michael E. Kurilla and Lieutenant General Herzi HaleviCourtesy

US Central Command (CENTCOM) said on Sunday that CENTCOM Commander Gen. Michael Erik Kurilla visited the Middle East, including Israel.

The visit lasted from February 26 to March 2. During the visit, CENTCOM said in a statement, Kurilla, visited Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Israel in the CENTCOM region “to better understand the security and humanitarian situation and meet with U.S. service members and security partners.”

“On Feb. 27, Gen. Kurilla traveled to Al Arish and Rafah Gate in Egypt where he met with representatives from several international and nongovernmental organizations, the Egyptian 2nd Field Army, and US embassy leadership to discuss the process of delivering humanitarian aid from Egypt into Gaza. The administrators described the challenges, opportunities, and level of support from the international community to increase the throughput of supplies into Gaza,” the statement said.

“On Feb. 28, Gen. Kurilla traveled to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan where he met with the Jordanian Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Maj. Gen. Yousef Alhnaity, his staff, and other leaders to discuss the Israel-Hamas War, Houthi attacks in the Red Sea, and regional security. The leaders also discussed opportunities to increase aid into Gaza to address the humanitarian crisis.”

“On Feb. 28 and 29, Gen. Kurilla visited CENTCOM military facilities in Jordan and Syria, including Tower 22, Al Tanf Garrison, Rumalyn Landing Zone, MSS Euphrates, and MSS Green Village to assess continued improvements in force protection, meet with local leaders, and gain a firsthand understanding of the progress made in the Defeat-ISIS Campaign,” said CENTCOM.

The Israel portion of the trip took place between February 28 and March 2, said the statement. During the visit to Israel, Gen. Kurilla met with Minister of Defense Yoav Gallant, IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi, and members of the IDF staff.

“The three had wide-ranging discussions on security concerns both within and outside of Israel. The conversations also focused on opportunities to improve the humanitarian situation in Gaza. Gen. Kurilla also met with the Israeli Coordination and Liaison Authority, which operates under the Coordination of Government Activities and the Territories (COGAT), and is responsible for the delivery of humanitarian aid to Gazan residents. Gen. Kurilla also met with the Commander of Northern Command and the Director of the Institute for Intelligence and Special Operations,” it said.

"This was my 27th trip to the CENTCOM region and every one of these trips allows me to gain a deeper understanding of the security challenges and opportunities as well as the unique perspectives that cannot be attained over the phone or through a video teleconference," said Gen. Kurilla.

"These are challenging times in the CENTCOM region, and we rely on the professionalism, commitment and competence of our Service-members as well as the strength of our relationships with our partners to solve them," he added.

Kurilla previously visited Israel in December and was briefed by top IDF officials on the progress of the war in Gaza.