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Netanyahu, Rivlin Speak at Paris Victims' Funeral

Today in Jerusalem, the four victims of last week’s attack on a kosher market in Paris were buried after a joint funeral. The Times of Israel reports that Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu both gave moving words at the service:

Thousands of mourners gathered at a Jerusalem cemetery Tuesday for the funeral of four Jews killed by an Islamist gunman in Paris, in a ceremony attended by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Reuven Rivlin and other Israeli and French officials. While the families delivered heartfelt eulogies for their loved ones, Israel’s leaders denounced Islamic extremism and the terrorists it is producing, and urged the world to confront the violence and restore security …

Said Rivlin: “Dear families, Yoav, Yohan, Philippe, Francois-Michel, this is not how we wanted to welcome you to Israel. This is not how we wanted you to arrive in the Land of Israel, this is not how we wanted to see you come home, to the State of Israel, and to Jerusalem, its capital. We wanted you alive, we wanted for you, life. At moments such as these, I stand before you, brokenhearted, shaken and in pain, and with me stands an entire nation…”

Concluded the president: “We cannot allow it to be the case, that in the year 2015, 70 years since the end of the Second World War, Jews are afraid to walk in the streets of Europe with skullcaps and tzitzit. It cannot be allowed that we should see in the news frequent vandalism of Jewish cemeteries, of Jews being beaten, and of synagogues and communities under attack. It is no longer possible to ignore or remain ambiguous, or to act weakly or with leniency against the rabid anti-Semitic incitement. Ignorance and violence will not simply go away on their own…”

Netanyahu hailed the power and resilience of the Jewish people, who have “managed to rise from the ashes” to build “a thriving state” in which the Jews determine their own destiny.” Israel, he said, would always receive Jews “with open arms.”

“More than ever, today,” the prime minister said, “Israel is the Jewish homeland,” and the more Jews there are here, “the stronger we will be in our homeland.”

Tags: Israel , Terrorism , Europe

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