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Michigan congressman Dan Kildee part of delegation traveling to the Middle East

Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

FLINT, Mich. (AP) - Michigan U.S. Rep. Dan Kildee is traveling to the Middle East this week for a visit to Israel and the Palestinian territories.

The Flint Democrat is one of 37 members of Congress participating in the trip, which begins Monday and runs through Aug. 11. It's an independent trip and not taxpayer-funded.

Kildee's office says his trip to Israel and the West Bank will include meetings with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

In a statement, Kildee's office says the goal of the trip is "to learn more about issues critical to the U.S.-Israel relationship and international security."

The trip follows the recent resumption of direct Israeli-Palestinian peace talks under U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's initiative toward a settlement of their longstanding conflict.

The Associated Press is an independent global news organization dedicated to factual reporting.