All Set

Itinerary finalized for Obama visit

President will visit Jerusalem, Yad Vashem, Mount Herzl, Israel Museum

Talks to be held on Iran, Syria, peace process and Jonathan Pollard

Meetings with Abbas and Jordan's Abdullah also confirmed


The itinerary for President Barack Obama's visit to Israel has been finalized.

The visit, which will take place in March, will include a full schedule of both ceremony and diplomacy, which a great deal more of the former than the latter.

The visit will include a formal state reception and farewell ceremony, speeches by President Peres and Prime Minister Netanyahu, official meetings with Peres and Netanyahu, and one formal session of diplomatic talks, where the topics are described by Algemeiner as "Iran, Syria, the peace process, and Jonathan Pollard."

The inclusion of the Pollard issue is surprising, as Obama has remained aloof from the case of the former Israeli spy, and no indications of a possible release have been forthcoming.

Obama will also visit the usual sites to which a visiting head of state is almost always taken: Yad Vashem, Mount Herzl, the Israel Museum, and the holy sites of Jerusalem. What is described as "a public speech to Israelis" is also on the itinerary.

The president is also set for a meeting with P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah and, following his departure from Israel, King Abdullah of Jordan. This indicates that at least some attempts at diplomatic progress are part of the agenda.

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