The Japanese Jiji Press reported on Wednesday that the Japanese Prime Minister, Koizumi Junichiro, intends to visit Israel and the Palestinian territories in January 2006, in an attempt to hold a trilateral summit to promote peace.
Israeli online daily Haaretz reported that Japan invited the Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, to visit Japan but he declined.
After Sharon declined the invitation to Japan, he was invited to the Japanese embassy in Israel last week for dinner with the Japanese ambassador; they both met and discussed diplomatic ties between the two countries.
Japanese media reported recently that Sharon wished to get advice from Koizumi on “strategies of political reforms”.
During his January visit to the region, Koizumi will arrange to meet with Sharon and the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, in an effort to conduct a trilateral summit.
Tomiichi Murayama, the former Japanese P.M visited Israel in 1995, Koizumi will be the first second Japanese Prime Minister to visit Israel since then.