Ayalon: I have visited sites
Photo: Noam Moscowitz
Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon announced Wednesday that all new Israeli ambassadors and Foreign Ministry cadets will be forced to visit "Jewish heritage sites" in the West Bank, including the Cave of Patriarchs.
Ayalon's message came just a few days after Education Minister Gideon Sa'ar announced a new plan for school trips to Hebron, also including a visit to the sacred Jewish site.
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Ambassadors and cadets will receive guided tours from settlers residing in Kiryat Arba, according to Ayalon, who says the plan is a joint initiative constructed by himself and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman.
"I see it as part of the education of Israel's diplomatic representatives around the world, in order to prevent apologetic public relations, among other things, and to clarify that we are in Hebron and Judea and Samaria due to rights, not force," Ayalon explained to Ynet.
But the plan is not yet in effect, according to the Foreign Ministry. "I have personally visited the Cave of Patriarchs and the tombs of the forefathers, and I think it is necessary for the explanation of the Israeli stance against the de-legitimization of Israel in the world," the deputy foreign minister added.
"The guys from the Foreign Ministry – new ambassadors and cadets taking the course – receive lectures and guided tours." Ayalon listed the sites to be included, such as Hebron's ancient synagogue, which was used during the 1929 Palestinian riots.
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