Report: Incoming Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Visit Israel Next Week
Written by TPS on April 26, 2018
Incoming US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will reportedly visit Israel next week as part of his first diplomatic foray overseas, several Hebrew-language media reported Thursday.
Pompeo, the outgoing CIA Director and a former member of the House of Representative from Kansas, one of the most conservative states in the country, is known for his strongly pro-Israel views. He is expected to be confirmed by the Senate Thursday.
Spokespeople for the United States embassy in Tel Aviv declined to comment on the report, noting that Pompeo has yet to be confirmed and the State Department has also not addressed the reports.
The report follows a report earlier this week on Channel 10 news that US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin would lead a 250-strong delegation to a ceremonial transfer of the US embassy in Jerusalem on May 14, the anniversary of Israel’s founding according to the Gregorian calendar.
That report, which said that some 40 political leaders would also attend, led to speculation that Pompeo could also attend, a symbolic move that would leave little doubt as to the depth of the Trump administration’s commitment to redefining US policy vis-à-vis Jerusalem.
The visit would not be Pompeo’s first to Israel: He visited several times as CIA director and maintained a close working relationship with Mossad Director Yossi Cohen.