World leaders congratulate Bennett on new government

Following the U.S., several allies expressed their best wishes to Israel under its new leadership, with many adding hope for peace and security in the region.

By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

World leaders called and tweeted their their congratulations to Prime Minister Naftali Bennett in the hours following the swearing in of his new government on Sunday.

The first call was from U.S. President Joe Biden, who reaffirmed his country’s solid friendship and commitment to Israel’s security, followed closely by Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, who took to Twitter to reaffirm his nation’s commitment to “stand by Israel’s side.”

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson also used the social media platform to offer his congratulations.

“As we emerge from COVID-19, this is an exciting time for the UK and Israel to continue working together to advance peace and prosperity for all,” he tweeted.

UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab specified the goal of “continued cooperation on security, trade and climate change, and working together to secure peace in the region” in his own congratulatory message.

Germany’s top two officials, Chancellor Angela Merkel and Foreign Affairs Minister Heiko Maas, both mentioned their eagerness to work closely with their new Israeli counterparts in their messages. Maas even threw in the traditional Jewish congratulations, tweeting, “Mazel tov! Germany will always be by Israel’s side.”

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Indian Prime Minister Narenda Modi, who established a close rapport with former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu that led to an exponential leap in trade and friendship between the two countries, went one better. He tweeted his congratulations to Bennett entirely in Hebrew, saying, “In anticipation of marking 30 years since the upgrading of our diplomatic relations next year, I look forward to meeting with you and deepening the strategic relationship between our two countries.”

Several European Union officials offered their best wishes, including Foreign Affairs chief Josep Borrell, who spoke to his counterpart, Foreign Minister and Alternate Prime Minister Yair Lapid. The common theme of the EU representatives was “the importance of strengthening the bilateral partnership & promoting security & peace in the region,” as Borrell tweeted after the call.

Making political progress with the Palestinians was seemingly uppermost in Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s mind. While touting the close friendship between the countries, he reiterated that Ottawa “remains steadfast in its commitment to a two-state solution, with Israelis and Palestinians living in peace, security, and dignity – without fear and with their human rights respected.”

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He also thanked former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu “for his valuable partnership over the years, at a time when Canada and Israel achieved a great deal together.”