Obama will speak to students - not Knesset

Barack Obama (Photo: AP)

Barack Obama (Photo: AP)

On his visit to Israel, US President Barack Obama will speak to thousands of Israeli and Arab students rather than giving a speech to the Knesset, in order to reach out to the younger generation.

Although many Members of Knesset and the Prime Minister’s Office asked for the speech to be given in parliament, it will instead be delivered to 1,500 to 2,000 students in Jerusalem’s International Convention Centre.

Universities around the country have been given tickets which are to be allocated to students by ballot.

US Vice-President Joe Biden explained that Mr Obama was looking forward to speaking directly to the Israeli public, and particularly to its younger members.

The president will arrive in Israel on March 20. The timetable of his three-day visit was released on Monday; the itinerary includes Mount Herzl, Yad Vashem and an Iron Dome battery. He will meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as well as the leader of the Opposition and will travel to Ramallah to meet Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

Last updated: 3:24pm, March 11 2013