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Israel’s Ambassador to Washington Stepping Down

orenServing as Israel’s man in Washington since 2009, Israel Ambassador to the USA Dr. Michael Oren announced he plans to step down in the fall. In a statement posted on his Facebook page he writes “Israel and the United States have always enjoyed a special relationship and, throughout these years of challenge, I was privileged to take part in forging even firmer bonds.”

The New Jersey born Oren, who made aliyah as a young man, will most likely be replaced by Ron Dermer. Dermer, born in 1971, a Floridian and a senior aide to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, is viewed as a close confidant of the nation’s leader.

Dermer worked as a political consultant for Natan Sharansky in the 1999 campaign when Sharansky headed the defunct Yisrael B’Aliyah Party.

A former Jerusalem Post columnist and bestselling co-author with Sharansky, they wrote The Case For Democracy: The Power of Freedom to Overcome Tyranny and Terror, famously endorsed by then US-President George W. Bush.

In 2005, while Netanyahu served as Finance Minister under Ariel Sharon, Dermer was appointed Minister for Economic Affairs to the Israeli embassy in Washington, a post for which he had to give up his American citizenship. In 2008, after his return to Israel, he became adviser to Netanyahu.

At the start of the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday, 29 Tammuz 5773, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu stated, “I would like to thank Israel’s ambassador in Washington, Michael Oren, who is finishing four years of service that I would define in one word – excellent. Michael has been an exemplary ambassador and has done very, very important work, which I am certain will be continued by his replacement, who we will name in the coming days.”

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

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