According to Israeli news reports, Angela Merkel is scheduled to visit Israel for the last time as chancellor of Germany on October 10. The Jerusalem Post said Merkel would meet President Isaac Herzog and Prime Minister Naftali Bennett. The newspaper said Merkel would visit the Yad Vashem holocaust memorial together with Bennett.

The German leader was also scheduled to receive an honorary degree from Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, speak at the Institute for National Security Studies and attend one of Bennett's cabinet meetings, i24NEWS said.

The news broadcaster noted that Merkel had been planning to visit Israel in August, but President Joe Biden's withdrawal from Afghanistan had required her to stay in Germany.

According to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA), the 67-year-old chancellor is expected to leave office in November. With the approach of her departure, politics in Germany was becoming "much more volatile," University of Mannheim Professor Rüdiger Schmitt-Beck told the BBC. He reminded the BBC of the strength of anti-immigrant feeling among the German public.

The Jerusalem Post said Merkel had visited Israel several times during her 16 years as chancellor. The paper recalled that in 2008 she had told the Knesset, "The Holocaust fills us with shame."

'A reliable partner for the Jewish community'

Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, president of the Conference of European Rabbis, was quoted by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) as saying Merkel had been "a steadfast ally, and not only in rhetoric but indecisive action." He told the JTA that Merkel had boldly criticized a German court banning circumcision except for medical reasons.

Her remarks had been a "crucial intervention" for protecting the rights of Jews to practice their religion, Goldschmidt told the JTA. Josef Schuster, president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, said to the news agency that the German leader had been "a reliable partner for the Jewish community."

'Generations pass, sentiments change'

In an analysis for the Jerusalem Post, Herb Keinon said Merkel's upcoming trip, her eighth to Israel, was intended to symbolize the importance of continued German support for the Jewish state.

The average German parliament member's age was much younger, and German support for Israel could not be taken for granted, Keinon said. "The key ingredient" of the relationship between Israel and Germany was "sentiment," Keinon said. "But as generations pass, sentiments change," he warned.

Attack on synagogue remembered

On October 3, German Unity Day, Merkel recalled a gunman's attack on a synagogue in the German city of Halle during Yom Kippur services. The attack was an example of the violent intolerance threatening German democracy, she said. A Deutsche Welle (DW) report about her speech is on YouTube.