Mount of Olives
Mount of Olivesצילום: נתי שוחט, פלאש 90

This week, a delegation of members of the International and Israel Committee for the Mount of Olives (ICHH) met with the senior management of Minister Zev Elkin, Minister of Housing and Minister of Moreshet and Jerusalem.

The delegation led by Shalom Lerner, Executive Director of ICHH, met with Moriah Chalamish chief of staff of Minister Elkin, Netanel Izak Executive Director of Ministry of Jerusalem and Moreshet and Yom Tov Goren, advisor to the Minister.

Also in attendance were Izzy Lerer, chief security officer of Ministry of Housing and Micha Marsh, in charge of security in East Jerusalem, who gave a comprehensive overview of the security situation on the Mount of Olives.

Mr. Marsh pointed out that there was a 24 hour watch on the Mount of Olives via security cameras and security patrols.

In the last five years there has been almost no cases of vandalism on the Mount of Olives.

After the security briefing and discussion, it was decided to continue the dialogue with a tour of the mountain led by Mr. Marsh and checking avenues of improving the security situation further.

Former MK Shuly Moalem and Jeff Daube, members of the delegation, pointed out that in the past there were many public events held on the mountain and that the ICHH is planning several large and smaller public events and are looking for the Ministry's help.

Moriah Chalamish congratulated the committee on its initiative and said that in the past she and the Ministry were full partners in various events on the mountain and would be delighted to continue doing so in the future.

She stressed that "The Mount of Olives holds a special place in the heart of Minister Elkin and that he has instructed his staff to help activities on the Mount of Olives as much as possible".

Netanel Izak, Executive Director of the Ministry of Jerusalem, said that" his office will always be open and supportive of activities on the Mount of Olives."

Shalom Lerner told of a pilot tour which will be held on the Mount of Olives in two weeks, in conjunction with the OU and of the ongoing efforts to raise enough money for the Visitor Center.

All participants said they would love to be part of these projects which will bring the Mount of Olives, the holy Mountain, to its proper status.

In conclusion of the meeting Mr. Lerner said: "The Mount of Olives has found true friends in these ministries".