President Rivlin Visits Chief Rabbis of Israel in Their Sukkot

Rivlin uses holiday visit to again urge national unity amid stalemate in forming next government

President Rivlin Visits Chief Rabbis of Israel in Their Sukkot
Haim Zach /GPO

“It seems to me that this is the time that leaders must intervene and push with all their power for unity. We must not allow public differences to become even wider,” President Rivlin said while visiting in the traditional Sukkah.

The president visited the Sukkah of Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi David Lau in Modi’in and said as he was greeted on his arrival “I am very happy to continue the tradition of presidents visiting the Sukkah of the Chief Rabbis, a tradition that brings together the State of Israel with the Jewish religion.”

“We are praying for a Sukkah of peace at the moment, and there is no prayer more relevant for the tribes of Israel. When we put the four species of Etrog, willow, myrtle and palm together, we hold them in both our hands, left and right. We understand that this is the only way we can hold them all together. We all have to live together. That is our destiny and our desire. But building a Sukkah of peace requires us to understand that we are all connected to each other.”

The president was then hosted in the Sukkah of Sephardi Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef in Jerusalem. The president thanked the rabbi for his warm hospitality and stressed that there is no room for incitement against any part of the Israeli population. The president noted the importance of a culture of disagreement and debate, which is deeply rooted in our tradition as a people, but that it requires all sides to listen to each other.

“We must find a way to continuing not to agree whilst respecting each other,” said the president. “Lack of agreement must not become incitement against the other. We must stop incitement of any kind and from any direction.”

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