Prince William to visit Israel, Palestinian territories

Prince William, the duke of Cambridge, will become the first British royal to make an official visit to Israel and Palestinian territories, Kensington Palace announced Thursday.

Prince William speaks at the British Columbia legislature in Canada in 2016. File Photo by Heinz Ruckemann/UPI | License Photo
Prince William speaks at the British Columbia legislature in Canada in 2016. File Photo by Heinz Ruckemann/UPI | License Photo

William will also visit Jordan. His wife, Kate Middleton, will not make the journey. She is expecting the couple’s third child in April.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted that he had asked the Israeli Foreign Ministry to coordinate the prince’s visit.

“We welcome the announcement of Prince William’s visit to Israel,” Netanyahu said. “This is an historic visit, the first of its kind, and he will be welcomed here with great affection.”

Reuven Rivlin, Israel’s president, said he was “happy” to hear of Prince William’s announcement.

“A very special guest, and a very special present for our 70th year of independence,” Rivlin said on Twitter.

Hanan Ashrawi, an executive committee member of the Palestine Liberation Organization, said William’s visit would be welcomed by all Palestinian people.

“On behalf of the Palestine Liberation Organization Executive Committee and the Palestinian people, we welcome His Royal Highness the Duke of Cambridge on his scheduled visit to Palestine this summer,” Ashrawi said.

“Prince William, who accepted an invitation from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, will be a welcome guest, not just of the leadership but of the Palestinian people who will provide him with the opportunity to share their stories first-hand and connect on a human level.”

By Sara Shayanian