“Your personal mission, your strength and your bravery are a role model for us in Israel and for Jewish communities around the world.”
President Reuven (Ruvi) Rivlin this morning, Sunday 10 November / 12 Cheshvan, sent a letter of solidarity to Holocaust survivor and Italian Life Senator Liliana Segre, after the Milan police decided she required constant close protection following hundreds of anti-Semitic threats on her life.
Segre, 93, called on the Italian parliament to fight anti-Semitism and hate crimes and to establish a parliamentary commission to combat them. Since her proposal was accepted, Segre has received hundreds of anti-Semitic messages threatening her life, and will be guarded by police from now on.
In his letter, the president wrote, “I was appalled to hear the news that anti-Semitic threats against you require you to receive protection to ensure your safety, and deeply regret that the circumstances of me writing to you are so distressing. Your personal mission, your strength and your bravery are a role model for us in Israel and for Jewish communities around the world.
No words can adequately express my horror and disgust that you should be exposed to such criminal behavior. As Holocaust survivor, you have seen the terrible and tragic consequences of anti-Semitism if not stopped; as a Life Senator of the Italian Republic, you have been recognized ‘for outstanding patriotic merits’; as a campaigner for justice and against racism and anti-Semitism, you work tirelessly for a better world.
Your case, unfortunately, is yet another terrible example of the reality for Jews in Europe today, but I believe that the most appropriate response is to carry on doing what you believe in.
Equality, human rights, accepting the other and tolerance are key to Judaism and universal human values. They are the foundations on which our lives are based, and without them, we are lesser people.
It would be a great honor, personally and for the State of Israel, to welcome you to Jerusalem and to visit Israel."