German Chancellor Olaf Scholz will discuss making “sure that Israel has what it needs to defend itself” when he meets US President Joe Biden in Washington later today, White House spokesperson John Kirby said.
According to Reuters, Scholz is scheduled to meet with US business executives before joining Biden at the White House for talks about Ukraine and Israel. No joint news conference is planned.
Kirby said Biden and Scholz were likely to discuss the situation in Gaza and “what together we can do as … strong allies to continue to make sure that Israel has what it needs to defend itself and humanitarian assistance gets into the people that need it.”
Germany and the US are Israel’s largest backers, with Berlin banning most pro-Palestine protests since 7 October, claiming they may become anti-Semitic. Both countries are also Israel’s main arms suppliers, with German arms exports to Israel rising tenfold after Tel Aviv’s war on Gaza.
The world leaders are also likely to discuss the Houthis’ threats against Israel-bound shipping traffic in the Red Sea, Kirby said, as well as “reaffirm their strong support for Ukraine and finding a way to continue to help Ukraine.”