US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is in Egypt to meet with government leaders.

After landing in the capital Cairo, he met with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.

Blinken’s visit comes ahead of a planned trip to Israel on Friday, where he will discuss ongoing negotiations to secure the release of all hostages, the Israeli military’s planned Rafah offensive, and the need to “dramatically increase and sustain the delivery of humanitarian aid” into Gaza, according to the State Department.

His trip comes at a critical time: US and Israeli officials are expected next week to discuss alternatives to a ground offensive in Gaza’s southern city of Rafah.