Australian foreign minister on three-day visit to Israel
Australia’s contribution to the UN peacekeeping forces in Sinai and the Golan won praise from Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman when he met Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop Sunday during her three days of talks with Israeli and Palestinian leaders. Ms Bishop noted that Australia was committed to standing up for Israel in multilateral fora when “obviously biased, discriminatory and unfair resolutions put forward.”
President Reuven Rivlin, like other Israeli leaders, stressed the importance of the close bilateral ties with Australia, when he received her in Jerusalem. He noted the historic importance of the forthcoming Anzac Centenary that will commemorate the 1917 Battle of Beersheba, in which the Australian Light Horse Regiment allied with the British Army defeated the Ottoman forces. This victory paved the way for the Balfour Declaration on November 2, 1917.
The Australian minister, who visited Yad Vashem, is scheduled to see Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu
and visit Australian entrepreneurs in Tel Aviv as well as talking to Palestinian leaders in Ramallah.