Prince William has landed in Israel, marking the first official visit to the country by a senior member of the royal family, according to Kensington Palace. The Duke of Cambridge touched down in Tel Aviv today and was greeted on the tarmac.
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Prince William arrives in Israel, on the first official visit by a senior member of the Royal Family
הנסיך ויליאם נוחת בישראל, לביקור הרשמי הראשון של בן משפחת המלוכה הבריטית. pic.twitter.com/2MCxP2scCz
— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) June 25, 2018
The Duke made the trip sans other prominent members of the royal family, like the Queen, Prince Charles, or his brother Prince Harry. His wife, Kate Middleton, is home with their three children (including two-month-old Prince Louis) on maternity leave.
Over the next three days, Prince William plans to visit Jaffa, Jerusalem, and Ramallah, a Palestinian city in the West Bank. This will also mark the first royal visit to the West Bank at the invitation of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, ABC News reports. The Duke’s visit in Israel follows his two-day visit of Jordan, where he departed from earlier today.
— Hannah Furness (@Hannah_Furness) June 25, 2018
Considering the British royals avoid getting involved in politics, it’s surprising the Duke would visit Israel and Palestine, two lands embroiled in decades of political—and often, violent—tensions. In December, U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May disagreed with President Trump‘s controversial decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
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“The historic nature of this tour is of course important and The Duke considers it a great privilege to be undertaking the first ever official Royal tour of Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories and to be able to help further strengthen the friendship between Jordan and the United Kingdom,” Kensington Palace said in a statement.
“More importantly, however, The Duke is looking forward to building a real and enduring relationship with the people of the region,” the palace added.
— Rebecca English (@RE_DailyMail) June 25, 2018
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Prince William’s activities officially kick off tomorrow, Tuesday June 26. His day will start with a visit to Yad Vashem, Israel’s official memorial to the Jewish victims of the Holocaust, where he’ll tour the museum and meet a Holocaust survivor.
He’ll also meet Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Reuven Rivlin at their respective residences.
This article originally appeared on Harper’s BAZAAR US.