United States Secretary of Defense James Mattis arrived on Thursday evening in Israel for a two-day visit as President Donald Trump's administration is forming a new policy on Iran.
Israeli officials said that Mattis is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Minister of Defense Avigdor Lieberman, and President Reuven Rivlin on Friday.
His visit is part of a trip to the region. Earlier on Thursday, he met with Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi in Cairo and told him that the U.S. is keen to take the bilateral defense cooperation, which he describes as strong, to a higher level.
On Tuesday, he met with senior officials in Saudi Arabia, a leading ally in the coalition against the Houthi militants in Yemen, which according to the U.S. are supported by Iran.
In a statement released by the Pentagon last week, his visit was said to focus on discussing ways to "defeat extremist terror organizations."