Rivlin and Kochavi in Berlin
Rivlin and Kochavi in Berlin Hezki Baruch

President Reuven Rivlin and Chief of Staff Lt. Col. Aviv Kochavi met today (Tuesday) in Berlin with German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

Steinmeier said at the meeting: "Biden's America is re-adjusting its policy in the Middle East. President Rivlin explained to me Israel's concerns about Iran. We share Israel's desire to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. The Trump administration's maximum pressure policy has not solved the problem and has radicalized Iran's positions."

The German president said: "We will talk at dinner about the situation in Israel. Israel is in its fourth election in two years "

Steinmeier praised Israel's success in the fight against the coronavirus: "We can learn a lot from you. Congratulations on the successful vaccination campaign you are leading in Israel. It is good that you are cooperating with the Palestinians and your neighbors in the fight against the pandemic and the distribution of vaccines."

President Rivlin told his German counterpart: '' I am proud and excited to be here in Berlin and to feel that I am among friends. In my youth as a student, I attended demonstrations in front of the President's House in Jerusalem when the German Ambassador came to Israel. I have received the credentials of[German representatives] and came to speak here in Berlin, which is committed to Holocaust remembrance and research."

"I have discovered leadership in Germany that preserves the Jewish community here and fights anti-Semitism in every form. Germany is committed to the security of the State of Israel and to maintaining stability in the Middle East," he said.

Rivlin said that "there is a potential turning point in the balance of power in the Middle East in light of the signing of the Abraham Accords. But Iran is threatening stability in the region. The entire international community must oppose the Iranian nuclear program. We trust our friend in Europe to stand by us on the Iranian issue and against the use of the court in The Hague against IDF soldiers."

"I thank Germany for the actions to return the prisoners, soldiers and civilians held captive by Hamas. Every effort will be made until our boys return home," President Rivlin promised.

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