(Ben Kelmer/Flash90)
Shimon Peres

Peres is not the first Israeli dignitary to be honored by the Big Apple. The city dedicated Golda Meir Square near Broadway and 39th St in 1984.

By Pesach Benson, United With Israel

New York City will be naming a Manhattan intersection after Shimon Peres, the late Israeli statesman. A New York-area web site, Patch, reported that the intersection of West 95th Street and Riverside Drive on the Upper West Side will be named “Shimon Peres Place.”

According to Patch, it was one of 199 street renamings approved by the New York City Council on Tuesday. The Jewish Telegraphic Agency noted that in 1949, Peres lived in an apartment at that very intersection with his wife Sonia and their daughter while studying at New York University and the New School.

A dedication date has not yet been scheduled.

Peres was born Szymon Perski in 1923 in an area of Poland now part of Belarus. The Perski family moved to the Holy Land in 1932, then under the British Mandate. Peres was active in Labor Zionism and became David Ben-Gurion‘s protege, starting off a political career spanning 70 years.

Peres was instrumental in acquiring French weapons and building the Dimona nuclear reactor.

In the 1984 elections, Peres’ party won more seats than any other party but was forced to agree to a rotational unity government with Likud, which was led by Yitzhak Shamir. Peres’ premiership was marked by an Israeli airstrike on PLO headquarters in Tunisia and the FBI’s arrest of intelligence analyst Jonathan Pollard for passing classified documents to Israel.

As foreign minister for Yitzhak Rabin, Peres played a key role in Israel’s controversial recognition of the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Oslo accords.

As acting prime minister following the Rabin assassination, Peres completed a peace deal with Jordan that his predecessor had initiated, launched Operation Grapes of Wrath in Lebanon and promoted Israeli internet use. In the 1996 elections, Peres narrowly lost to Benjamin Netanyahu. He went on to serve as Israel’s president.

Peres died in 2016 and is buried in Jerusalem’s Mt. Herzl cemetery.

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