President Rivlin with the leader of the delegation of British Conservative MPs, the Rt. Hon. Sir Eric Pickles.
President Reuven Rivlin met with a delegation of British Conservative Members of Parliament hosted by Conservative Friends of Israel, led by The Rt. Hon. Sir Eric Pickles.
The President opened his remarks by noting his appreciation for remarks recently made by British Prime Minister David Cameron on the need to confront terrorism and fundamentalism in society. He said, "The Prime Minister's words were deeply significant, and I want to express my appreciation."
The President added, "Israel currently faces a range of challenges. There is cross-party concern over the possibility of a nuclear Iran, however this is not our only concern, as we are greatly worried by Iran's ongoing support for terrorism across the region. Sadly, we have a difference of opinion on this with our friends in Europe and the USA, and I thank you as those who are working to keep Israel far from any such existential threat."
Sir Eric Pickles responded by thanking the President for his warm welcome and said, "Mr. President, I became a Member of Parliament in 1992 and on my first day in office I joined the Conservative Friends of Israel. We are here as a delegation of past ministers and indeed future ministers, to proudly show our friendship with Israel. Israel is a democracy amid a difficult region of bloodshed and dictatorships and a lack of human rights. It is a matter of pride that Israeli courts are independent of the government, can challenge the government and overturn decisions. We are delighted by the fact our bilateral trade has increased, indeed doubled in recent years, and that we see cooperation not only in security but in biotech, information technology, and many other fields."
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