(Communicated by the Prime Minister's Media Adviser)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that the State of Israel bows its head upon the passing of its fourth president, Ephraim Katzir. Ephraim Katzir was completely committed to the State of Israel and was one of its outstanding scientists and was among the first and most prominent scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science. He also contributed to Israel's security. His integrity and modesty were an example for all.
At the beginning of the weekly Cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Netanyahu said:
"Yesterday, the fourth President of the State of Israel, Prof. Ephraim Katzir, passed away. He was a rare combination of personal ability and public mission. He divided his life between science and security, between voluntarism and education, between achievements and modesty.
He was a very, very modest man. His life was one of struggles, challenges, successes and accomplishments, all of which were for the good of the State of Israel. Well before he became President, he had built an important layer in our national life in this country. As President, he continued this special combination and brought his many abilities and modesty to the institution of the presidency.
The State of Israel and its citizens have lost one of their dearest sons, a man who did everything for the good of the nation. Even is his later years, confined to a wheelchair, he continued to attend various ceremonies regularly and "to fly the flag", one might say, out of a profound commitment to the State, as an outstanding and genuine Israeli patriot. He was an historic figure who contributed to the development, security and establishment of the State of Israel. On behalf of the Government, we bow our heads and convey our condolences to the Katzir family."