VIDEO/PHOTOS: For The First Time Knesset Holds Welcome Ceremony For US Ambassador To Israel



The Knesset Caucus for US/Israel Relations in partnership with the Ruderman Family Foundation officially welcomed US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman at a warm reception in Jerusalem on Tuesday 2 Av, which included over 40 MKs from various political parties. This is the first time in the history of Israel that the Knesset conducted an official event to welcome any foreign ambassador.

The Members of Knesset were in attendance to welcome and honor Ambassador Friedman, each speaking freely about issues that were most concerning for them, including moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem, escalating threats from Iran, the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, recent diplomatic issues with Jordan, and other strife within the Jewish World.

“Our governments are joined at the hip in many respects and work very closely together to achieve what is in our collective interests,” said Ambassador Friedman. “I think that what I heard today was a demonstration of the robust democracy that exists every day in Israel, which is not at all unlike the democracy that I’m more familiar with in the United States. I will tell you that the United States is committed to peace in the Middle East and I’ll tell you something else more important, I think Israel is committed to peace in the Middle East.”

The Knesset Caucus for US/Israel Relations was established in 2013 and serves as a dynamic platform for open and candid conversations on relevant and controversial issues on the relationship between Israel, America and the American-Jewish community. It aims to elevate the concerns of American Jews within Israeli deliberations and aspirations.

“The fact that over 40 Members of Knesset from across the political spectrum came to personally welcome Ambassador Friedman at the Knesset Caucus for US-Israel Relations, led by the Ruderman Family Foundation together with MK Nachman Shai and MK Avraham Neguise, shows how much Israeli political leaders care about the relationship between the United States and Israel,” said Jay Ruderman, President of the Ruderman Family Foundation. “We believe that a common dialogue and mutual learning of each other, in moments of disagreement and in everyday routine, form the basis for creating a strong relationship.”

“I congratulate you, your Excellency, on the beginning of your diplomatic work in Israel and am pleased to host your first formal event at the Knesset,” MK Nachman Shai, Co-chairman of the caucus for US-Israel Relations said to Ambassador Friedman. “I look forward to working together with you and strengthening our ties in order to reach new achievements. The caucus also aims to strengthen the relationship with the American Jewish community, a very special challenge. I promise you one thing: you will not be bored. I wish you much success.”

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)