(JNS.org) Starting next Thursday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio will make his first visit to Israel since taking office. Visiting the Jewish state has been considered a tradition for mayors of the city with more Jewish residents than any other in the U.S.
During his visit, de Blasio will deliver an Oct. 18 keynote address at the Annual Conference of Mayors, and his remarks will cover the combating of anti-Semitism. The conference is being hosted by the American Jewish Congress, the American Council for World Jewry, and the World Forum of Russian-Speaking Jewry. Dozens of mayors from around the world will convene “to discuss the issues and challenges facing cities,” according to a spokesperson for de Blasio.
De Blasio’s Israel trip is reportedly being partially funded by the mayor and his staff, and otherwise through a “private gift to the city” by Israeli entrepreneur Baruch Eliezer Gross.
"I'm honored to join Mayor de Blasio in his fight against anti-Semitism and in support of tolerance. New York City can provide other cities with a model for protecting all communities against hate,” Gross told Politico New York.