Israeli President Rivlin: Building Trust With Palestinians Not Only for Leftists

Rivlin tells coexistence event in Jerusalem that trust building between Israelis and Palestinians should take place in Knesset, media and public sphere.

Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis
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Israeli President Reuven Rivlin addressing a meeting of Israelis from across religious spectrum, Jerusalem, July 23, 2015.
Israeli President Reuven Rivlin addressing a meeting of Israelis from across religious spectrum, Jerusalem, July 23, 2015.Credit: Olivier Fitoussi
Jonathan Lis
Jonathan Lis

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin called on Israel's citizens to take part in the building of trust between the Israeli and Palestinian peoples. In a letter sent Monday to a coexistence event in Jerusalem, Rivlin wrote that this effort should take place in Knesset, the media and the public sphere.

"The task of building trust between the Arab and the Jewish public is not a task for the left or for one political camp or another, but a task for anyone who cherishes this country," Rivlin said. "The fact that this issue has become identified with a political camp, both on the Jewish and the Arab side, is nothing more than tragic."

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas greeted the teenagers participating in the event in a video he sent and said that "Israeli and Palestinian youth are raised today with no opportunity to get to know one another. We want and are working to achieve change and peace, for you, the future generation."

The event on Monday in Jerusalem was organized by the nonprofit Kids Creating Peace. The NGO launched a social media campaign in attempt to raise awareness for the need of mutual Palestinian-Israeli respect. As part of the campaign, calling of the public to judge people according to their personality and not their looks, Israeli and Palestinian teenagers will post "humanity selfies," a close-up image of only their eyes.

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