Governor Abbott Meets With Prime Minister Netanyahu, Pledges Full Support Of Israel In Jerusalem, Tel Aviv

November 3, 2023 | Austin, Texas | Press Release

Governor Greg Abbott yesterday met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli President Isaac Herzog, and other Israeli officials in Jerusalem to discuss ways Texas can continue to support the people of Israel as they fight to defend their freedom amid the Israel-Hamas war. Joined by Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt during the trip, Governor Abbott also traveled to Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center – Ichilov Hospital where he visited with victims impacted by heinous acts of war committed by Hamas.
“Texas has always, and will always, support Israel and the Israeli people,” said Governor Abbott. “During this trip, I saw firsthand the resilient spirit of the Israeli people. The strength and hope displayed as I met with Prime Minister Netanyahu, President Herzog, survivors of the October 7 attack, and families of kidnapped Israelis was truly inspiring. The resolve of Israel's leaders and the bravery of its people have never wavered in the face of evil, and the people of Israel are once again uniting to vigorously fight to defend their freedom. Texas will continue to help support Israel safeguard their freedom against brutal terrorist organizations like Hamas.”
Video of Governor Abbott and Governor Stitt’s visit to Israel is available here.
In Jerusalem, Governors Abbott and Stitt met with Prime Minister Netanyahu to extend Texas’ complete and total support of Israel and its right to self-defense. Governor Abbott highlighted the deep bond shared between the people of Israel and Texas, emphasizing that Texas’ strong relationship and support for freedom in Israel has never been more important than it is today.
Governors Abbott and Stitt then met with Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel. Foreign Minister Cohen detailed the unspeakable realities of Hamas’ brutal murders and the kidnapping of more than 240 hostages on October 7. The Governors then heard firsthand accounts from a survivor and the family of an American citizen kidnapped and taken hostage at the Supernova Sukkot Gathering music festival. The Foreign Minister outlined Israel’s main objective is to bring all the hostages home and asked Governors Abbott and Stitt to urge the United States Congress for swift support for Israel.
Governors Abbott and Stitt then attended a lunch with the former Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Chief of the General Staff Lieutenant General Aviv Kohavi. Lt. General Kohavi discussed the bravery of the Israeli people, as well as strategies and impacts of retaliation against terrorist organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah. Using maps and war zone photos, Lt. General Kohavi emphasized that Hamas and Hezbollah are no longer just terrorist organizations—but full-fledged terrorist militaries.
After the lunch, Governors Abbott and Stitt joined President Herzog at The President’s House. The President thanked the Governors for traveling to Israel and for their solidarity with Israel. President Herzog outlined the extreme threat posed by the regional coalition of nations surrounding Israel, detailing how this coalition of hate toward the State of Israel also threatens American national security. Governor Abbott pledged to continue spreading this message to Texans and Americans back home and increase awareness and understanding of the realities behind the Israel-Hamas war.  
After a productive meeting with President Herzog, Governors Abbott and Stitt visited with displaced Israelis—including many families—at a hotel in Jerusalem. Governor Abbott was moved by countless stories of heroism, generosity, and selflessness among the Israeli people amid the ongoing war, including firsthand accounts of strangers opening their homes to evacuees, communities organizing food banks, and everyday citizens quickly volunteering to join the military. Before ending in a group prayer, the displaced citizens told the Governors that the people in their country have never been more united. 
Governor Abbott and Stitt then traveled to Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center – Ichilov Hospital to visit with victims recovering from the acts of war committed by Hamas. The Governors were greeted by the CEO of Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center – Ichilov Hospital Professor Ronni Gamzu. Governor Abbott and Stitt heard eyewitness accounts of the devastating and terrifying October 7 attacks, with all the victims mentioning how they could have never imagined such hate. The Governors also meet with Israeli soldiers to thank them for their service to defend and protect Israeli freedom.
This trip was coordinated with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel and the Consulate General of Israel to the Southwest.
Video of Governor Abbott and Governor Stitt’s visit to Israel is available here.