Israel's president visiting Silicon Valley this week

Israel's President Shimon Peres speaks to the media during a press conference after meeting with Cypriot President Dimitris Christofias, unseen, at the presidential palace in Nicosia, Cyprus, Thursday, Nov. 3, 2011. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)

March 5, 2012 12:13:14 PM PST
The first sitting Israeli president to ever visit the Bay Area is in Silicon Valley. Shimon Peres's trip to the Bay Area involves a little bit of diplomacy and a whole lot of economic development footwork.

Israeli and U.S. Secret Service are in charge of security while Peres is in the Bay Area. Peres will visit with IBM today and over the next few days he will also visit with Facebook, Cisco and Google - just to name a few. He wants to entice them to expand into Israel.

"I think President Peres is going to broaden the relationship and call for more companies that are located over here to invest and open research and development centers in Israel," said Israeli Deputy Consul General Gideon Lusting.

Tomorrow evening, Peres will speak to a crowd of 2,000 at Temple Emanu-El in San Francisco. Among those expected to attend are California Governor Jerry Brown and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee.

His visit comes as tensions are peaking between Iran and Israel. In Washington D.C. on Sunday, Peres gave a speech that was against Iran's nuclear program.