(Communicated by the Prime Minister's Media Adviser and the Foreign Minister's Bureau)
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife Laureen will arrive in Israel on Sunday, 19 January 2014, on an official four-day visit
. The Canadian Prime Minister will be accompanied by ministers, MPs and business people. This will be his first visit to Israel and the first by a serving Canadian Prime Minister since 2000.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara will welcome Prime Minister and Laureen Harper in an official ceremony on Sunday afternoon at the Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem. The Netanyahus will later host the Harpers for dinner at their official residence in Jerusalem.
Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman will meet on Sunday with Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs John Baird.
On Sunday evening, FM Liberman will host FM Baird for dinner along with other Israeli and Canadian government ministers: on the Israeli side - Interior Minister Gideon Sa'ar, Minister of Agriculture Yair Shamir, Minister of Tourism Uzi Landau, Minister of Strategic and Intelligence Affairs Yuval Steinitz, and Deputy Foreign Minister Zeev Elkin; on the Canadian side - Minister of Employment and Social Development Jason Kenney, Minister for International Trade Edward Fast, Minister of Industry James Moore, Natural Resources Minister Joseph Oliver, Minister of International Development Christian Paradis. Also attending will be members of Knesset and Canadian senators and members of Parliament.
On Monday, 20 January, Prime Minister Harper will be the first Canadian Prime Minister to address the Knesset.
On Tuesday morning, 21 January, will meet with President Shimon Peres and attend a joint meeting of the Israeli and Canadian governments at the Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem. Prime Minister and Sara Netanyahu will, afterwards, accompany the Harpers to Yad Vashem. An official dinner for Prime Minister Harper, his wife and accompanying delegation will be held Tuesday evening in Jerusalem.
On Wednesday, 22 January, the Harpers will tour Christian holy sites in northern Israel, after which they will go to Tel Aviv University, where Prime Minister Harper will receive an honorary doctorate and meet with students.
Prime Minister Netanyahu and Canadian Prime Minister Harper have previously met in London in April 2013 and in Ottawa in March 2012.
Prime Minister Netanyahu said, "Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is a great friend of the State of Israel. He has strongly opposed against attempts to delegitimize the State of Israel and has taken a praiseworthy moral stand against these attempts. I welcome his arrival together with his wife and the members of his delegation. We will work together to further enhance the important relations between our two countries."