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Pranab Mukherjee addresses Israel Parliament

President Pranab Mukherjee during the laying wreath at tomb of Theodor Herzl at Mount Herzl, Jerusalem, in Israel on Tuesday.

President Pranab Mukherjee during the laying wreath at tomb of Theodor Herzl at Mount Herzl, Jerusalem, in Israel on Tuesday.

President Pranab Mukherjee addressed the Israeli Parliament, Knesset. The President, who arrived in Jerusalem on Tuesday after visiting Jordan and Palestine, was accorded a ceremonial reception at the presidential palace today.

Live updates (in IST):

3:30 pm: He shakes hand with President Pranab Mukherjee.

3:28 pm: Mr. Netanyahu concludes his speech saying Indians are always welcome in Israel.

3:25 pm: "I talk to Mr. Modi quite often," says Mr. Netanyahu. When we met last time he told me, "I see a paragon of paternity between our two counties."

3:22 pm: While Mr. Mukherjee's speech avoided the mention of Israel-Palestine conflict, Mr. Netanyahu's speech focuses on his country's security anxieties and terrorism.

3:20 pm: We have some preconditions for peace talks. Terror must be stopped. Only then talks can make results. And they should also recognise that Israel is the national home of the Jewish people. That's a national priority, says the PM

3:19 pm: "Israel is an island of stability in an unstable region. They want to destroy our people. But we will make sure that they won't succeed," says the PM

3:18 pm: "Look at the Palestinians. They are misled by the radical groups. Radical inciters are telling them that we are going to destroy the Al Aqsa mosque. We respect all religions and religious places."

3:17 pm: "We must act together against terror groups."

3:16 pm: Referring to the Mumbai attacks, the Prime Minister says, "In 2008 your country was targeted. Terror aimed at innocent people has no justification."

3:15 pm: Both the counties are attacked by radical terrorist groups. We are grappling with several challenges, says Netanyahu

3:13 pm: " We would be delighted to provide our technologies to India."

3:12 pm: Economical and technological collaboration between India and Israel is unprecedented, says Israeli Prime Minister.

3:10 pm: Israel and India have stayed as examples for democracies for seven decades, says Netanyahu

3:09 pm: Sky is the limit for cooperation for India and Israel. We are bound by certain things. Our cultures are most ancient in the world, says the Israeli PM.

3:08 pm: Prime Minister Netanyahu starts speaking in Hebrew.

3:07 pm: The President is concluding his speech with no mention of Palestine.

3:05 pm: Mr. Mukherjee says Indian population enjoy the taste of hummus, an Arab food item. But, he pronounces it as Hamas. Israeli MPs look at each other for a moment.

3:03 pm: Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is seen taking notes, sitting in the first row of MPs.

3:01 pm: I am told Hebrew has been learned in some villages in northern India, says the President.

3:00 pm:

2:58 pm: Our countries should collaborate in the field of agriculture, says the President. "Israeli technological advances can enhance India's industrial production. Collaboration can create more jobs both in India and Israel," he says.

2:56 pm: Now, the President moves on to economic cooperation. He praises Israel for its technological advances and performance in the field of agriculture.

2:55 pm: "Today's UN should be more responsive to the challenges the world is facing now," the President says.

2:54 pm: ' India has always been a strong voice of democratic countries in multinational for forums.'

2:53 pm: President thanks Israel "for rushing critical defence supplies in 1999."

2:50 pm: More than 2000 years ago Jews had arrived in India. The Jewish people have always been an integral part of India's composite society, says Mr. Mukherjee.

2:49 pm: My state visit to Israel is taking place at a time when relations between India and Israel is taking a very positive trajectory, says the President.

2:44: pm ' I feel deeply honoured to be the first President of India to visit the Knesset.'

2:43 pm: Shalom and Namaste, he begins his speech

2:42 pm: President Pranab Mukherjee starts addressing the Knesset.

2:41 pm: " Israel and India show the very clear path here. They will fight fundamentalist elements together," says Mr. Eselstein.

2:40 pm: "Your country has also seen violent Islamist extremist attacks. Any sensible person would say that killing innocent people would not solve any crisis," says the Speaker.

2:38 pm: Welcoming the Indian President, Speaker Yuli says, "You're citing our country at a very turbulent time. Violence is spreading."

2:36 pm: Speaker Yuli Eselstein and President Reuven Rivlin welcomes him to the hall.

2:35 pm: President Pranab Mukherjee arrives in the Knesset hall

2:30 pm: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrives in the Knesset

2:20 pm:

Mural paintings by Shagal decorate the Israeli Parliament.Photo: Stanly Johny

2:10 pm: The President will sign the guest book at Knesset's Shagal hall — named after famed Jewish artist shegal.

2:09 pm: Mr. Mukherjee arives, will first lay wreath at a memorial for the victims of wars in front of the Knesset.

2:01 pm: The presidential motorcade has arrived. Israeli guards are set to welcome Mr. Mukherjee.

1:50 pm:

Indian MPs arrive at Knesset.

1:46 pm: "President Rivlin, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyanu and I will discuss the many global challenges that our two countries face today," Mr. Mukherjee told the media.

1:39 pm: In a meeting with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, Mr. Mukherjee condemned the recent spate of violence in east Jerusalem. "We are disturbed at the recent violence. India condemns all forms of violence . We have always sought a peaceful resolution of disputes", he told the delegation and reporters.

On Tuesday, three Israelis were killed in two separate incidents in Jerusalem. One of the assailants was shot dead by Israeli troops.

1:23 pm: The local press is critical of Mr. Mukherjee's Palestine visit. The Jerusalem Post noted that Indian President remained silent on 'Palestinian terrorism' during his visits to Ramallah.

1:20 pm: There will be delegation-level talks today after President Mukherjee's address. Both sides are expected to sign some MoUs.

1:15 pm: In 1997, Israel President Ezer Weizman became the first head of the Jewish State to visit India. Former Israeli Prime Ariel Sharon came to India in 2003 when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister. 


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Printable version | May 13, 2022 2:29:22 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/President-Pranab-Mukherjee-addresses-Knesset-the-Israeli-Parliament/article60271561.ece