Israeli leaders congratulated President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris on their inauguration on Wednesday and expressed hope for a continued close relationship between Jerusalem and Washington.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recorded a message in which he highlighted their “warm personal friendship going back many decades.”
“I look forward to working with you to further strengthen the US-Israel alliance, to continue expanding peace between Israel and the Arab world and to confront common challenges, chief among them the threat posed by Iran,” he said, touching on a point that may prove an issue of disagreement with the Biden Administration, which wants to return to the Iran nuclear deal.
Netanyahu wished Biden and Harris “the greatest success. God bless the United States of America. God bless Israel.”
Israel President Reuven Rivlin sent a letter to Biden in which he expressed Israel’s “very best wishes” to him and Harris and “to all the American people.”
“Today, you begin your term of office as leaders of the free world, elected by the world’s greatest democracy. May God bless your efforts and crown them with success,” the letter said.
“Mr. President, sometimes even the obvious has to be said. The United States of America has no greater friend than the State of Israel and the American people have no greater friend than the Israeli people,” Rivlin wrote.
“Our relationship crosses partisan politics, is rooted in shared values of democracy and freedom, and has the overwhelming support of both our peoples. We have no doubt that under your presidency the United States remains committed to the security and prosperity of Israel,” he added.
He noted that the Middle East is “undergoing rapid change, much of it positive. The recent peace agreements between Israel and our neighbors bring new hope, and I look forward to working with you to help build further bridges across our region, including with our Palestinian neighbors.”