Former premier passes away
Former Israeli president and prime minister Shimon Peres died early yesterday. He was 93. His son, Chemi, confirmed his father’s death to reporters gathered at the hospital where Peres had been treated for the past two weeks. Peres’ condition worsened following a major stroke two weeks ago that led to bleeding in his brain. He was sedated and on a respirator during most of his hospitalization. “Today with deep sorrow we bid farewell to our beloved father, the ninth president of Israel,” Chemi Peres said. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a statement mourning the passing of Peres. He said he will convene his Cabinet for a special session later in the day. After that, a special committee is due to prepare arrangements for a funeral that many international dignitaries and world leaders are expected to attend. Officials said that Peres’ body would lie in state at the Knesset, or parliament, today to allow the public to pay final respects. His funeral was set for tomorrow at Mount Herzl, the country’s national cemetery in Jerusalem. Yona Bartal, a former personal aide to Peres, said the arrangements were in line with his wishes. Former President Bill Clinton and Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton said they “lost a true and treasured friend”. They called him “a genius with a big heart who used his gifts to imagine a future of reconciliation, not conflict”.
FRIENDS: Bill Clinton with Shimon Peres