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April 16, 2013 9:16 am

Obama, Pope, World Leaders Offer Congratulations On Israel’s Independence Day

avatar by Zach Pontz

Israeli flag.

On Tuesday, Israel celebrated the country’s Independence Day. In honor of the occasion, several world leaders passed along their congratulations to Israel’s President Shimon Peres and the Israeli people.

The Pope: “I send cordial greetings to you and your fellow citizens on the occasion of Israel’s National Day. At the  beginning of my Pontificate, l gladly invoke upon you and all the people of Israel  the blessings of the Most High and assure you of my prayers for your high responsibilities at the’ service of the nation.”

U.S. President Barack Obama: “As Israelis celebrate Yom Ha’Atzmaut, the American people join me in applauding the remarkable Israeli achievements over the past six and a half decades. The United States stood together with the State of Israel at its founding, and we will stand together with you always.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin: “I wish you good health, Mr. President, as well as peace and prosperity to the Israel people.”

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On Tuesday morning, the country’s leaders, including President Shimon Peres, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and IDF chief Benny Gantz gathered at the President’s Residence for an independence day celebration. The ceremony, which also honors the military’s top performers, featured song and dance performances.

Millions of Israelis descended on public spaces to celebrate the day, with some nature sites reporting overcrowding.

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