(Communicated by the President’s Spokeswoman)

President Moshe Katsav today (Friday), 27 January 2006, issued the following statement on the passing earlier today of former German President Johannes Rau:

“Johannes Rau was a great friend of the State of Israel and the Jewish people.  He continued in the path of Konrad Adenauer in fostering relations between the Jewish and German peoples. During his tenure as president, Herr Rau contributed significantly to bilateral relations and was a great fighter against anti-Semitism and Holocaust-denial. I grieve over his passing and sends my sincerest condolences to the Rau family and the German people.”