Jared Kushner, US President Donald Trump’ s son-in-law and adviser, will visit Israel and Morocco next week to discuss the normalisation of ties between the two countries, a US official said Tuesday.
The American delegation, headed by Kushner, will take the first direct commercial flight from Tel Aviv to Rabat as a sign of progress after the Israel-Morocco deal that Kushner helped broker, the official said.
Kushner, Middle East envoy Avi Berkowitz and Adam Boehler, chief executive officer of the US International Development Finance Corporation, will arrive in Israel on Monday.
While in Jerusalem, Kushner is to hold talks with Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, the official said.
El Al is expected to be the airliner for the flight from Tel Aviv to Rabat next Tuesday for the Kushner team and a delegation led by Israeli national security adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat, the official said.
In a live interview on Israel’s Army Radio, Transportation Minister Miri Regev was asked about news of the Kushner trip.
“I am so proud that our grandfathers and grandmothers can visit Morocco while still alive. This is peace,” said Regev, who is descended from Moroccan Jewish immigrants to Israel.
Morocco is the Muslim country that produced the greatest number of Jewish immigrants to Israel – 250,000.
The North African country last week announced a “resumption of relations” with Israel, in an announcement making it the fourth Arab country this year to unveil plans to normalise ties with Tel Aviv through a US-brokered deal, following the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Sudan.
The announcement came after Trump tweeted that Rabat and Israel had agreed to “full diplomatic relations.”
That followed Trump’s recognition of Morocco’s contested sovereignty in Western Sahara, infuriating the Algerian-backed Polisario Front, which controls about one-fifth of the vast, arid region.
Western Sahara is a disputed and divided former Spanish colony, mostly under Morocco’s control, where tensions with the pro-independence Polisario have simmered since the 1970s.
The movement has dismissed Trump’s announcement and vowed to fight on until Moroccan forces withdraw from the entire region.