Dr Mike Evans

Yair Lapid holds first meeting as prime minister with Jordan’s King Abdullah II

Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid held his first meeting with Jordanian leader King Abdullah II since taking leadership of the nation.

The two Middle East leaders met in Amman on Wednesday to discuss improved relations.

“The two leaders discussed the many opportunities to build on the peace agreements, improve the long-standing link between their peoples and strengthen the two countries’ common interests,” according to Lapid’s official Twitter account.

Lapid and Abdullah II also “discussed the importance of their personal ties and their mutual esteem as an important element in maintaining regional stability and presenting tangible achievements to the two peoples and to the entire region.”

The meeting also included a discussion of President Joe Biden’s “recent visit to Israel and the region, as well as the possibilities and opportunities the visit brought in its wake including the regional architecture,” according to the statement.

Among the bilateral projects discussed were, “Advancing the Jordan Gateway Industrial Park, building facilities for solar energy in Jordan and for desalination in Israel, joint tourism in the Eilat-Aqaba Gulf, food security, agriculture, and transportation links.”

Though the meeting marked the first in-person visit between the two leaders, Lapid spoke with Abdullah II by phone prior to Biden’s visit that included wishing the people of Jordan a happy Eid al-Adha.

In addition to Lapid’s meeting, Israeli President Isaac Herzog has visited Jordan twice this year.

The discussion also comes as leaders from Russia and Turkey met with Iran’s president in Tehran. The events could lead to an increased focus on Syria, as well as on keeping Iran from developing a nuclear weapon.

Israel and Jordan have long had a strong peace agreement that has since spread to other nations normalizing relations with Israel through the Abraham Accords. The partnership will continue to be important as world issues intensify regarding Iran, Russia, and other threats in the Middle East.