Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses the Board of Governors of The Jewish Agency for Israel (photo credit: Dave Bender, Jewish Agency for Israel)
February 18, 2013 / 8 Adar 5773
Today, (Monday 18.02) Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the Board of Governors of The Jewish Agency for Israel. In his opening remarks, Prime Minister Netanyahu told the Chairman of the Executive, Natan Sharansky that “I have come to request that the Board of Governors extend your term by another four years.” He told Sharansky that he was: “symbol of Jewish unity and the triumph of the Jewish People over adversity; but you are much more than just a symbol. You have always worked tirelessly to secure the Jewish future.”
After declaring that “The de-legitimization of Israel in the face of attempts to destroy it is one of the great moral failures of our time”, Prime Minister Netanyahu told the Board of Governors: “We should stand up for Israel and the truth. I cannot think of anyone better suited for that than you. I value your commitment to Jewish education and values and to the Jewish state. It is a great partnership that exists between the government and the Jewish Agency. I look forward to working together with you to help secure the Jewish people with Natan at the helm.”
The Prime Minister emphasized that he views Iran as the greatest threat facing Israel and that North Korea proved that economic sanctions alone would not work. He said that only “sanctions combined with a robust, credible military threat” might stop Iran, “An Iranian nuclear weapon would transform the Middle East into a tinderbox, changing the world as we know it” he added.
Netanyahu welcomed the coming visit of President Barack Obama and noted that in addition to the Iranian issue he would raise Syria and restarting negotiations with the Palestinians, “We need to seek a realistic peace process with the Palestinians, one which guarantees peace and security”, he added that “I don’t want to waste another four years negotiating about the negotiations. I place no preconditions for negotiations. I wish this were true for the Palestinians. The visit of President Obama is an opportunity to reset this.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hugs Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency for Israel, Natan Sharansky, at the Board of Governors of the Jewish Agency in Jerusalem (photo credit: Dave Bender, The Jewish Agency for Israel)
During his speech Prime Minister Netanyahu emphasized the need for unity in order to overcome the challenges that Israel faces. With regard to the coalition negotiations he said, “We face great changes in the regimes around us and the weapons around us. I don’t believe that we can do that without unity. I am trying to build a broad national unity government which will extend to the whole Jewish world.”
The Board of Governors of the Jewish Agency is comprised of organizations from around the world and meets three times a year under the leadership of the Chairman of the Board of Governors James S. Tisch, and the Chairman of the Executive Natan Sharansky to hold in depth strategic discussions about issues affecting the Jewish world and Israeli society and to formulate Jewish Agency policy.
For additional information please contact Benjamin Rutland, Spokesperson to the Foreign and English Language Media on 0526091099.