This evening at sundown, we will mark the beginning of Yom Ha’Atzmaut, Israel Independence day, when the Jewish state was born 69 years ago. Every year on the 5th of Iyar in the Hebrew calendar, Jewish communities across the world gather to commemorate and celebrate the foundation of the State of Israel.
As we commemorate the realization of the Jewish people’s ancient dream to establish a modern Jewish state in their historic homeland, we can recall with pride that Canada was one of the first countries to recognize and champion the state of Israel.
This day offers an opportunity to recognize the many challenges facing Israel and the Jewish people even today, and to reaffirm our commitment to strengthen the bonds of our partnership. We have long honored our historic friendship with Israel, which is rooted in our common fundamental values of freedom and democracy.
Despite the constant threat to their existence, we will always defend the right of the Jewish people to live in peace and freedom in their ancestral homeland, and we will always stand up for Israel’s right to exist. Canada and our allies must combat efforts to delegitimize the world’s only Jewish state.
As we celebrate the creation of the State of Israel and the return of the Jewish people to their homeland, I encourage Canadians to wish everyone celebrating Israel’s Independence Day a Yom Ha’Atzmaut Sameach.