(JNS) Israeli Minister of Diaspora Affairs Omer Yankelevitch will be introducing a Knesset bill that would require government ministries to consult with world Jewry on matters directly related to the Jewish people, such as Jewish informal and formal education, engagement and anti-Semitism.
“Creating an official forum that ensures mutual dialogue between Israel and world Jewry is the first step towards ensuring the relationship between Israel and the greater Jewish people into the future,” she told JNS. “The establishment of an official body transforms the relationship between the State of Israel and world Jewry by formalizing the notion that the Jewish world has the right to a voice in the Jewish state,” she explained, adding that “the State of Israel values the opinion of world Jewry, and is committed to the connection between Israel and Jewish people living outside of Israel.”
“It is a declaration that taking in the voices of world Jewry is not only valuable, but also a necessity,” she said. Yet, she related, “ultimately, it is Israeli citizens and stakeholders who have the right to vote and determine the direction that the State of Israel takes. What this body does is provide world Jewry with the right to be heard. Those who sit at a table tasked with consulting the government of Israel must be Jewish leaders who are committed to upholding Israel as a Jewish and democratic state.”