JERUSALEM: Israel’s Tourism Minister Haim Katz arrived in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday for the first such high-level public visit to the kingdom amid talks to secure bilateral ties.
“Katz is the first Israeli minister to head an official delegation in Saudi Arabia,” his ministry said in a statement, adding he would attend a United Nations World Tourism Organisation event in Riyadh.
“Tourism is a bridge between nations,” Katz says, according to his office. “Cooperation in the field of tourism has the potential to bring hearts together, and economic progress.” “I will work to advance cooperation, tourism and the foreign relations of Israel,” he said.
Katz’s visit comes as a Saudi delegation visited Ramallah for the first time in three decades and met Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
In March this year, Saudi Arabia had refused to issue visas for an Israeli delegation to a similar UNWTO event.