Israel Environment Bulletin Winter 1995-5755, Vol. 18, No. 1

MINISTER YOSSI SARID: ON PEACE AND THE ENVIRONMENT

Preservation of the environment knows no boundaries, and ecological problems totally ignore the markings on a map. No one country will be able to solve its environmental problems alone. Global partnership is the key word as the world moves towards close cooperation between neighboring countries.

The government of Israel is a government whose raison d’etre is achieving peace. Peace is now more attainable than ever. Every responsible person must make the supreme effort, extend his hand and touch peace, hold it and never let it go.

I would like to share with you a private thought, which is my real prayer. I pray that the day will shortly come when we, the Ministers of the Environment, will be the most important ministers in our governmentand believe me, my prayers have nothing to do with personal ambition. The best sign for our region will be when the Ministers of Education, Health, Welfare and Environment are the leading ministers in our countries. This will be a sign that the longed for peace has come and a new era has begunan era of blessings, prosperity and fraternity amongst our nations and all peoples.

Our collective obligation is first and foremost to our children. We have beautiful and precious children, full of promise. The duty to protect their lives is the basic duty of all our governments. As a human being, as a father, as a citizen of this region and as a minister of the environment, I look forward to the moment when we will no longer need to check whether our children are breathing, but to check only what they breathe. We will not only guarantee their lives, but give them quality of life.

Amen and Shalom.

(From the address by Mr. Yossi Sarid, Minister of the Environment of the State of Israel, to the Mediterranean 21 Ministerial Conference in Tunisia on November 1, 1994)