Israeli, world leaders bid farewell to President Peres


(Israel Hayom/Exclusive to Israel's ninth president, Shimon Peres, was laid to rest Friday in a state service held at Mount Herzl, Israel’s national cemetery in Jerusalem.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaking at the funeral of former Israeli President Shimon Peres. Credit: Kobi Gideon/GPO. 

Israeli leaders from across the political spectrum, alongside dignitaries from 70 countries worldwide, attended funeral.

Peres' coffin was taken to Mount Herzl on Friday morning, arriving at the national cemetery at 8:30 a.m.

The official state service was held at 9:30 a.m., with some 5,000 people in attendance.

President Reuven Rivlin, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein, former U.S. President Bill Clinton, author Amos Oz, and the late president's three children, Tsvia, Yoni and Chemi spoke at the service. U.S. President Barack Obama was the last to pay tribute to the late Israeli president.

President Reuven Rivlin's eulogized Peres as one whose efforts to promote peace were inspiring.

"You were not just a man of vision, but a man of action. I was privileged to watch you with amazement, as a partner in the construction of the State of Israel from its inception,” Rivlin said.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke of Peres' optimism and quest for peace.

"You spared no effort to strike peace. ... And in the tumultuous Middle East, where only the strong survive, peace can only be obtained if it stems from the constant guarantee of our might. Such power is but the means to an end -- the purpose of existence and coexistence, prosperity, peace and progress, for us, our Palestinian neighbors, and the nations of the region.”

President Obama spoke of Peres' dream of regional peace.

"He showed us that justice and hope are at the heart of the Zionist idea. A free life in a homeland regained, a secure life in a nation that can defend itself by itself. A full life and friendship with nations who can be counted on as allies.”

Posted on September 30, 2016 .