Obama to Attend Shimon Peres' Funeral

Obama to Attend Shimon Peres' Funeral

Obama to Attend Shimon Peres' Funeral

Israeli citizens joined Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and former US President Bill Clinton at the Knesset to pay their respects to Shimon Peres.

The former Israeli president and prime minister died Wednesday, two weeks after suffering a stroke, at the age of 93.

The Palestinian Authority president will be attending the funeral of former Israeli President Shimon Peres.

A PLO source, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the subject, said that Mr. Erekat had been hesitant to attend, that Abbas's decision is "a very unpopular" one among Palestinian officials and the attempt to take a message of peace to Jerusalem is "bulls***".

Israel's blue and white flag has been lowered to half-mast around the world.

King Abdullah of Jordan sends a letter of condolence to President Reuven Rivlin over the death of Shimon Peres, including a plea for a continuation of the peace process that the former president helped to launch.

According to Israel Radio, the PM will meet tonight with Bill Clinton and European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, and tomorrow he will hold talks with French President Francois Hollande, Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. Then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, now the Democratic presidential candidate, attended that meeting.

Obiechina noted that the 1994 Nobel Peace Prize was awarded jointly to Peres, Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat for their efforts to create peace in the Middle East.

"As a young Israeli defense official, Shimon Peres secured arms and technology deals that laid the foundation blocks for his fledgling country's military might", The Christian Science Monitor's Joshua Mitnick wrote in a retrospective published Wednesday.

Clinton appeared moved as he stood silently before Peres's flag-draped coffin at the plaza outside parliament in Jerusalem.

Walden said Peres also requested Israeli singer David D'or sing at his funeral.

While eulogies poured in from the West, reactions in the Arab world, where Peres had a much more checkered legacy, have been largely absent.

The foreign minister of Bahrain issued a tribute to Peres early Thursday, a rarity for an Arab leader.

Peres, who had a 55-year political career, was considered the last of Israel's founding fathers.

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