PM Lee on week-long visit to Middle East from Saturday

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will begin his first official visit to Jordan tomorrow (April 16), to affirm Singapore's good relations with them.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong will begin his first official visit to Jordan tomorrow (April 16), to affirm Singapore's good relations with them.PHOTO: ST FILE

AMMAN, JORDAN - Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong begins his official visit to Jordan on Saturday (April 16).

He will then travel to Israel on Monday, and to the Palestinian Territories on Wednesday.

This is Mr Lee's first official visit to Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Territories, the Prime Minister's Office said in a statement on Friday.

"The visit will affirm Singapore's good relations with Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian National Authority, and underscore Singapore's commitment to support the capacity building efforts of the Palestinian people," the statement added.

While in Jordan, Mr Lee will be hosted to lunch by King Abdullah II. He will meet Prime Minister and Defence Minister Abdullah Ensour, who will also host him to dinner.

Mr Lee will also meet Chief Advisor for Religious and Cultural Affairs Prince Ghazi Bin Muhammad Bin Talal. He will also meet Singapore students studying in Jordan.

In Israel, Mr Lee will call on President Reuven Rivlin and meet Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

He will also meet Leader of the Opposition Isaac Herzog and former President and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shimon Peres.

In addition, Mr Lee will meet leaders of major Israeli technology companies and visit the Hebrew University, where he will receive an honorary doctorate.

He will also witness the signing of an agreement between Hebrew University and Singapore's National Research Foundation to facilitate research collaboration in Singapore.

In the Palestinian Territories, Mr Lee will meet Prime Minister of the Palestinian National Authority Rami Hamdallah, who will host him to lunch.

Mr Lee will also lay a wreath at the mausoleum of the first President of the Palestinian National Authority, Yasser Arafat.

PM Lee will be accompanied by Mrs Lee, Foreign Affairs Minister Vivian Balakrishnan, Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli, Minister of State for Communications and Information and Education Janil Puthucheary, and MPs Liang Eng Hwa and Intan Azura Mokhtar.

During Mr Lee's absence, Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security Teo Chee Hean will be the Acting Prime Minister.