After Kensington Palace announced Thursday that Prince William will become the first royal family member to visit the Palestinian Authority, Palestinian leaders welcomed the news. During the trip, the British royal will also visit Israel.

Prince William

Prince William Photo Credit: Screenshot from Twitter/Kensington Palace

Palestinian leaders on Thursday welcomed Kensington Palace’s announcement about Prince William’s upcoming visit. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas highlighted the importance of the visit and said that it will hopefully strengthen the ties between the British and Palestinian nations, according to the PA’s official Wafa news site.

Hanan Ashrawi, a senior member of the PLO Executive Committee, also welcomed the summer visit. “On behalf of the Palestine Liberation Organization Executive Committee and the Palestinian people, we welcome His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge on his scheduled visit to Palestine this summer,” she said in a statement, according to Wafa. “Prince William, who accepted an invitation from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, will be a welcome guest, not just of the leadership but of the Palestinian people who will provide him with the opportunity to share their stories first-hand and connect on a human level.”

Earlier today, JOL reported that the official English announcement on Twitter referred to the PA as “the Occupied Palestinian Territories,” sparking a heated debate in the comment section. Nevertheless, the Duke of Cambridge’s plans to visit Israel and become the first British royal family member to visit the Jewish state were praised by Israeli leaders. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the visit “historic” in a tweet and said that Prince William “will be welcomed here with great affection.”

Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin tweeted a similar statement. “A very special guest, and a very special present for our 70th year of independence,” he added.