JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel’s prime minister says the upcoming visit of U.S. Vice President Joe Biden proves the strong ties between the close allies.

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, wearing sunglasses, stands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, his wife Sarah, and Former British Prime Minister and Mideast Envoy Tony Blair during a ceremony for late Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon at the Knesset plaza, Israel's Parliament, in Jerusalem, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014.  (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner)

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, wearing sunglasses, stands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, his wife Sarah, and Former British Prime Minister and Mideast Envoy Tony Blair during a ceremony for late Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon at the Knesset plaza, Israel’s Parliament, in Jerusalem, Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. (AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner)

Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday called Biden a “friend” and his visit a reflection of close ties. He said, “those who have predicted the collapse of these relations” have been proven wrong.

Netanyahu has had a rocky relationship with President Barack Obama, particularly over Netanyahu’s fierce objection to a nuclear deal with Iran. Biden’s previous official visit in 2010 was marred by an Israeli announcement of a new West Bank settlement project that angered the White House, which declared it damaging to peace prospects.

Biden, who arrives in Israel on Tuesday, will also visit Jordan and the United Arab Emirates during his swing through the region.