Netanyahu: Peres a 'visionary' who championed defense of Israel

Prime Minister eulogizes former rival and 1996 election opponent as 'visionary' who 'strengthened Israel's defense.'

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Peres and Netanyahu
Peres and Netanyahu
Flash 90

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu hailed former President and Prime Minister Shimon Peres as a "visionary" and a "champion of Israel's defense" after the 93-year-old elder statesman's death earlier Wednesday morning.

"Shimon dedicated his life to the rebirth of our people," Netanyahu, who was a political rival of Peres, said in a statement.

"As a visionary he looked to the future. As a champion of Israel's defense, he strengthened its capacities in many ways, some of them still unacknowledged to this day," he added, referring to Peres's role in the development of Israel's undeclared nuclear program.

AFP contributed to this report