US Jewish Leaders Arrive in Jerusalem for Final Tribute to President Shimon Peres

New York, NY September 29, 2016 - - A significant number of American Jewish leaders have traveled to Jerusalem to participate in the funeral services for the late President and Prime Minister of Israel, Shimon Peres. The leaders will be joining diplomats from scores of countries including President Obama, Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau, French President Hollande, and German Chancellor Merkel and representatives of some Arab countries will also be present, as the State and people of Israel mourn the passing of their visionary president and two-time prime minister.

Malcolm Hoenlein, Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of the Conference of Presidents, who visited Peres’s family last week in his hospital room, will be attending along with representatives of major organizations including Robert Cohen (AIPAC), Barbara Goldstein (Hadassah), Jonathan Greenblatt (ADL), Rabbi Rick Jacobs (URJ), Jerry Silverman (JFNA), Rabbi Chaim Wasserman (Young Israel) and Rabbi Steven Wernick (USCJ). Others are expected to join as well along with Jewish leaders from around the world including Ambassador Ronald Lauder, President of the World Jewish Congress.

Mr. Hoenlein said, “President Peres was a unique leader and the attendance of so many prominent world leaders on short notice is a testament to the high esteem in which he was held. President Peres devoted his life to his country and his people, and to the pursuit of peace.

He was a very young 93 whose mind was always thinking about the challenges and opportunities in the future. He was an early proponent of Israel’s involvement in High Tech and Nanotechnology as well as more recently brain research and other cutting edge biomedical advances.

At this historic turning point, with the passing of the last of Israel’s founders’ generation, we felt it was imperative to be in Jerusalem to express our admiration and respect for his immense contributions over many decades to enhancing the security and international standing of Israel.”

Mr. Hoenlein added, “I am grateful for the opportunity I had last week to express our prayers and best wishes to the family and to have had the privilege to work with him for almost four decades.

Though he will be sorely missed, his lessons and messages will continue to guide us all for many years to come.” 

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The Conference of Presidents is the central coordinating body representing 50 national Jewish organizations on issues of national and international concern

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