IDF paratropers upon liberation of Old City of Jerusalem in 1967. (David Rubinger( (David Rubinger)
Liberation of Jerusalem

Hundreds of participants in the 2017 AIPAC conference joined Israeli government representatives in celebrating the 50th anniversary of the liberation of Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria.

Four government ministers, two Consuls General and 350 participants in AIPAC’s annual policy conference in Washington held a celebration marking the 50th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem and the liberation of Judea and Samaria during the Six Day War.

The event was hosted by Oded Revivi, mayor of Efrat and chief foreign envoy of the Yesha Council representing Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, and Dani Dayan, Revivi’s predecessor who currently serves as Israel’s consul general in New York. It featured Construction and Housing Minister Yoav Galant  (Kulanu), acting Communications Minister Tzahi Hanegbi (Likud), Deputy Defense Minister Eli Ben Dahan (Jewish Home) and Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely (Likud). Participants also had the opportunity to sample Judea and Samaria produce, including wine, dates, halva and Dead Sea cosmetics

Housing and Construction Minister Yoav Galant said the mountains of Judea and Samaria are a critical strategic asset for the State of Israel. Hanegbi added, “Defense is important, and security is important. But the most important thing is our moral claim. We are committed to living in our historic land -a land that was given to us not by Google or Wikipedia, but by the Bible. By King David, King Saul, King Solomon, Abraham and others. This is our birthright, and we will demand our rights here forever.”

Others spoke about the need to strengthen Israel’s grip over Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, including new communities and moving the US embassy to the Israeli capital.

“We are committed to doing everything in our power to strengthen the Israeli presence in Judea and Samaria by improving roads, infrastructure, laws and everything that needs to be done to ensure that there will be 1 million Israelis living in Judea and Samaria,” Ben Dahan said. “It’s doable.”

By: Andrew Friedman/TPS

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