On the eve of Israel’s Memorial Day citizens of the Jewish state have already begun to commemorate the fallen. At 8.p.m. the solemn holiday officially begins with a minute-long siren which will ring out across the country.
At his weekly cabinet meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, “From the moment the state was established, it has not ceased to wish for peace with its neighbors and to the same degree, its enemies have not ceased from their aspiration to wipe it off the face of the earth. We are here thanks to Israel’s fighters who joined the struggle for our existence, thanks to those who survived the wars and thanks to those who fell. We do not forget, even for a second, that we are here thanks to the fallen.”
The pm added,”We will continue to strengthen our security, we will continue to aspire for peace with our neighbors, and we will continue to ensure the future of our country.”
On Monday, the official state memorial ceremony will commence at 11 a.m. at the Mount Herzl military cemetery in Jerusalem. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli President Shimon Peres will be among those in attendance.
According to figures released Friday 23,085 have fallen in Israel’s wars since 1860. The number of those killed in terrorist attacks stands at 2,493 including 120 foreign citizens. The past year has seen 10 civilians killed in terror attacks. Terror attacks have left 2,848 people orphans, 976 bereaved parents and 799 widows and widowers.