Prime Minister Yair Lapid arrived in Berlin, Germany, Sunday evening and upon landing declared: “This evening, I arrived in Berlin for a diplomatic visit accompanied by Holocaust survivors Pnina, Avraham, Shoshana, Yisrael, and Zvi. As we stepped off the plane together and onto German soil, we were welcomed by a German military honor guard. This is their victory, mine as the son of a Holocaust survivor and ours as a people and a nation. We will never forget.”
On Monday morning, Lapid met with German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier at the Schloss Bellevue presidential palace in Berlin. The two leaders held a private meeting that lasted about an hour.
The Prime Minister expressed the importance of continuing the fight against Iran’s nuclear program and strengthening Israel and Germany’s strategic partnership. Lapid thanked President Steinmeier for standing with Israel in the fight against antisemitism, and for his work to reach an agreement with the families of the victims of the terrorist attack at the Munich Olympics.
Here’s one example of President Steinmeier’s friendship with Israel and the Jewish people. During a 2015 debate about Germany’s recognition of the Armenian genocide, Steinmeier was the most reluctant politician to endorse it. Steinmeier argued that calling the Armenian massacres genocide risked belittling the Holocaust. He was widely criticized for his position and accused of Armenian genocide denial. When the German Bundestag almost unanimously approved a resolution in 2016, Steinmeier abstained from the vote and criticized the resolution in public. He was one of only two out of the 630 MPs who did not support the resolution.