Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told the Jewish Agency Board of Governors Monday that Agency head Natan Sharansky is “a giant of the Jewish people,” and he asked the Board to renew his position for another four years.

Sharansky, whose low height makes him an unlikely basketball star, “is the tallest chairman of the Jewish Agency,” the Prime Minister said.

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“He’s a battle-scarred veteran of the campaign to secure the Jewish future. We are of the same age, and when my generation earned its scars on the battlefields of Israel, we lost loved ones and some of us didn’t live to see the day, you earned your scars in a Soviet dungeon, totally fearless, absolutely courageous, totally dedicated to the Jewish state and the Jewish people, and I think that this quality first helped you obviously survive the Soviet jail, but it also prepared you for Israeli politics.”

Prime Minister Netanyahu complimented Sharansky as “a symbol of Jewish unity and a symbol of the triumph of the Jewish people over adversity” who has “earned the respect not only of the Jewish people in Israel, but of non-Jews worldwide.”

Netanyahu recently asked Sharansky to try to work a solution to mediate the issue of demands by the “Woman of the Wall” group to break the status quo at the Western Wall and wear prayer shawls and carry a Torah scroll, activities that orthodox rabbis restrict to men.

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