Elon Musk landed in Tel Aviv on Monday to hold meetings with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Isaac Herzog amid a cease-fire between the country and the Hamas militant group in Gaza.
Musk’s visit comes after he drew sharp condemnation, including from the White House, for antisemitic comments he amplified on his account on X, the social media company formerly known as Twitter. His actions also prompted major companies, including Apple, to temporarily suspend advertising on X.
Herzog’s office confirmed the upcoming meeting, where the two men are expected to be joined by representatives of the families of hostages, to discuss “the horrors of the Hamas terror attack on October 7, and of the ongoing pain and uncertainty for those held captive.” Herzog is also planning to “emphasize the need to act to combat rising antisemitism online” in his talks with the X chairman.
Earlier Monday, Musk and Netanyahu visited a kibbutz in southern Israel that was attacked by Hamas militants on Oct. 7. Musk, wearing a bulletproof vest, is seen taking pictures and videos on his phone as he witnesses the destruction in a video released by Netanyahu’s office.
Musk and Netanyahu will talk about the “security aspects of artificial intelligence” and host an online conversation, Netanyahu’s office said, according to Reuters.
The two men previously held a livestreamed conversation in September where Netanyahu asked the billionaire to take steps to limit antisemitism.
Earlier this month, Musk appeared to endorse a post on X accusing Jewish communities of “pushing the exact kind of dialectical hatred against whites that they claim to want people to stop using against them.”
“I’m deeply disinterested in giving the tiniest shit now about western Jewish populations coming to the disturbing realization that those hordes of minorities that support flooding their country don’t exactly like them too much,” the post continued.
Musk replied: “You have said the actual truth.”
He later pushed back on the suggestion that he is antisemitic in a new post last week, writing: “Nothing could be further from the truth.”
Shlomo Karhi, Israel’s communications minister wrote on X on Monday that the country struck a deal in principle to use Musk’s Starlink satellite network in Gaza.
“As a result of this significant agreement, Starlink satellite units can only be operated in Israel with the approval of the Israeli Ministry of Communications, including the Gaza Strip,” he said.
Musk’s visit comes amid a truce struck between Israel and Hamas that is set to expire soon as international mediators are pushing for its extension. A fourth exchange of Hamas-held hostages for Palestinians imprisoned by Israel is expected Monday.