Mayors possess the experience necessary to become leaders, a senior Israeli politician has said as he met Boris Johnson.
Tel Aviv mayor Ron Huldai met Mr Johnson on the opening day of the Conservative MP’s three-day trade mission to the region.
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But London mayor Mr Johnson is also seen to be boosting his standing on the global stage in making a trip which will see him meet senior political figures from Israel and the Palestinian territories.
Mr Huldai is also reported to harbour ambitions to lead Israel’s Labour Party.
Asked if it was a good thing that mayors should run for higher office, Mr Huldai told reporters in Tel Aviv: “Of course. I think the experience of being a mayor is the most important experience before prime minister.”
Questioned about his thoughts on those comments, Mr Johnson replied: “I’m a great admirer and supporter of Ron but it would be wrong of me to comment on his career now.”
Mr Huldai joked: “He came here and advised me to say it.”