NEW YORK - The World Jewish Congress mourns the passing of Yitzhak Navon, who served as president of the State of Israel from 1978 to 1983. Navon passed away on Friday at the age of 94. “We extend our condolences to Yitzhak Navon’s widow, and to his children and grandchildren. His life story reflects the history of the State of Israel and of Zionism,” said World Jewish Congress President Ronald Lauder.
Navon was born in Jerusalem and served in the Information Service of the pre-state Hagana, on which the foundation of the Israeli intelligence community was built. He was a secretary to Israel’s first prime minister, David Ben Gurion. In this capacity he both witnessed and participated in the most important and dramatic decisions made to enhance the security, economy and welfare of the Jewish state.
Navon also served his country as a member of the Knesset, as minister of education and as its fifth president.
“In each of his public offices, the welfare of Jewish communities around the world was close to his heart, and he was always ready and willing to help these communities in every way possible,” added Lauder.
As a gifted writer and playwright, Navon worked laboriously to strengthen the unity of Israel’s diverse ethnic fabric and contributed endlessly to preserving the glorious heritage of the Sephardic Jewish community. He was true lover of his native city, Jerusalem.
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The World Jewish Congress (WJC) is the international organization representing Jewish communities in 100 countries to governments, parliaments and international organizations.
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