Last week, Israeli President Isaac Herzog and First Lady Michal Herzog traveled to Turkey for the first visit of an Israeli leader since 2008. Herzog was invited to visit Ankara and Istanbul by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Speaking just prior to departure, Herzog told reporters that he had been "in dialogue" with President, adding that, "Israel-Turkey relations are important for Israel, important for Turkey, and important for the whole region ... I always emphasize that my vision is that Jews, Muslims, and Christians will live in peace in our region."

On Thursday, Herzog visited the Neve Shalom synagogue in Istanbul where he was honored by the local Jewish community.

Speaking after the event, Rabbi Mendy Chitrik, the rabbi of Turkey's Ashkenazi community and the chairman of the Alliance of Rabbis in Islamic States, noted that this was "a significant event for peace between Jews and Muslims and I think it's an important step for world peace ... I think that this is something that can develop and become better."

"It was a pleasure and an honor to receive the President of Israel," added Yitzchak Coleman, a member of the Istanbul Jewish community. "I hope that the relationship between Turkey and Israel will prosper with this visit. It is our best wish that Turkey and Israel should have better relations."

"We are a very small comunity and an old one, dating back over 520 years," noted Avi Habib, another local Jew. "We've been waiting for this to happen for a long time."

The Jews interviewed all expressed their delight that Turkey appears to be interested in mending its ties somewhat with Israel, although they did not see this as an immediate security need.

"It's hard to be a Jew anywhere in the world; it's not harder here than anywhere else," said Habib.

"We have no fear of terror," agreed Coleman. "We don't face any specific anti-Semitism on the streets, and we're not afraid of the situation."

"There's no tension here," added Rabbi Chitrik. "Jewish life here is vibrant and strong as it has been for thousands of years and it will continue this way."