Delegation chairman Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate (AP/Charlie Neibergall, File) AP/Charlie Neibergall, File
Delegation chairman Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate

According to the AJC, “a number of American states have been expanding commercial and other ties with Israel.”

By United With Israel Staff

A bipartisan delegation of secretaries of state from across the United States is visiting Israel with an itinerary that includes in-depth discussions on cybersecurity policies and practices at the state, local, and federal levels as they relate to business services, election administration, and records management, according to a statement issued by the American Jewish Committee’s (AJC).

The delegation is visiting in the framework of the activities of the AJC’s Project Interchange, the statement says.

The team’s visit is said to be a week-long educational seminar that also aims to enhance U.S.-Israel relations “at the vital state level.”

According to the AJC, “a number of American states have been expanding commercial and other ties with Israel.”

The organization says that the 11-member delegation is chaired by Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate, who also serves as president of the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS).

This is the first NASS delegation to visit Israel in partnership with Project Interchange, says AJC, which, according to The New York Times, is “widely regarded as the dean of American Jewish organizations.”

“As key state executives, secretaries of state are uniquely on the forefront of today’s most complex issues, including election cybersecurity. My fellow secretaries and I are excited to partner with AJC Project Interchange to not only relay our important work to the region, but also learn from their leaders and compare notes,” said Pate.

“Secretaries of State are key leaders in the U.S., and foster important public policy, while working closely with all branches of government and business,” said Nisha Abkarian, AJC Project Interchange director. “With their vital role supervising elections and promoting bilateral business exchanges, we are truly delighted with this new partnership, and to host our first-ever NASS delegation in Israel.”

The delegation is said to be participating in comprehensive discussions with top leaders of Israel’s National Cyber Directorate and focusing on collaboration among government, academia, and the private sector, in addition to visiting significant historic, cultural, and religious sites across Israel.

The delegation was also to meet with Palestinian civic and business leaders in Ramallah in the Palestinian Authority, said AJC in its statement.

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