Ayalon: This mission demonstrates that Israel is always willing to contribute and volunteer anywhere and at any time.
(Communicated by the Deputy Foreign Minister’s Bureau)
Today, (Wednesday, 25 August), Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon met with 14 Israeli police officers who are about to leave to join a multinational policing force under the command of UN forces stationed in Haiti. The delegation will become the first Israeli contingent to serve in active duty under the command of the United Nations. In Haiti, the Israeli officers will be working in coordination with the Italian police.
The Deputy Foreign Minister congratulated the officers and told them that they represent Israel. "You are Israel’s true face. The value of human life is important to all of us and you represent Israel and the Jewish spirit of Tikkun Olam (repairing the world) to the international community," Ayalon told the officers. "This was already proven when Israel was amongst the first to land in Haiti immediately after the earthquake and save so many lives. You continue this tradition.
"Your goal is to save human lives and help with law and order in Haiti. This will further our standing in the world, which is especially important against those who campaign to delegitimize us. This mission will demonstrate to friends and foes alike that Israel is always willing to contribute and volunteer anywhere and at any time. It is important for people to see Israel beyond the conflict and to see that this is the real Israel. We are not only strong materially, but also strong in spirit.
"What you are doing is part of our foreign policy of cooperation in the international agenda as a full member of the United Nations," Ayalon said.
Deputy Police Chief Ilan Franco said that it was Israel’s honor to restore public order in Haiti. "On Monday the contingent will leave for Haiti for a number of months. This mission was coordinated between the Ministry of International Security, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Israeli Police. I am proud to say that this delegation is made up of our best forces."
Representatives of the United Nations recognized Israel’s contribution and congratulated the officers on their bravery and commitment. As examples of this commitment, two police officers have delayed their weddings to take part in this mission, and one is going although his wife is in the latter stages of pregnancy. Officer Golan De-Leon said, "Even though this will be my first child, I am personally committed to this mission and have the full support of my wife."