TOPEKA – Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt last week led a delegation of state attorneys general to build state-level relations with legal and security officials in Israel.
“So often, diplomats and officials of foreign governments, including our close friend Israel, focus their attention on the major cities of our East and West coasts,” Schmidt said. “It is important for Kansas that they also understand what we have to offer.”
The delegation of seven attorneys general met with Ayelet Shaked, the Israeli minister of justice, to discuss trans-national security issues, including cybersecurity. They also traveled to the Golan Heights where they observed and were briefed on fighting in the Syrian civil war just across the border and visited injured Syrians receiving treatment by Israeli medical staff at the Galilee Medical Center.
The attorneys general met with Israel’s deputy attorney general, officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the prime minister’s office, legal advisers to the Israeli Defense Force, members of the Knesset, and an Israeli Arab journalist. Their discussions included combating terrorism and other public safety challenges.
“Whether it’s cyber or physical security, events and decisions made halfway around the world affect our lives in Kansas,” Schmidt said.
Schmidt led the delegation in his capacity as president-elect of the National Association of Attorneys General, which coordinated the visit. The America-Israel Friendship League sponsored the delegation. No taxpayer funds were used.
The visit to Israel came one week after Schmidt traveled to Fort Hood, Texas, to visit Kansas soldiers in the Fort Leavenworth-based 35th Infantry Division, who are preparing to deploy to the Middle East in support of U.S. national security interests in the region.