The Viceregal Lion
  1. The Governor General of Canada
  2. Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette
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Media Statement with the President of the State of Israel

Jerusalem, Wednesday, November 2, 2016


I’d like to thank President Rivlin for inviting my wife, Sharon, and me for this State visit. I’m delighted to be the first governor general of Canada to visit Israel.

On this trip, we are being joined by a number of talented and dedicated Canadians. We’re here to strengthen the already robust relationship between our countries.

I can’t help but be reminded of the late Shimon Peres at this moment, who came to Canada in 2012 on his own State visit. Canadians were saddened at the loss of such a great statesman, and I was honoured to have met him then in Canada and earlier in Israel. Since his visit, I’ve been hoping to have this chance to reciprocate the sentiments that he conveyed in Canada.

Our two countries are great friends and great partners. Moreover, we share common aspirations and values, one of which is the importance of pluralism and diversity. I know, President Rivlin, you have made this one of your priorities while in office.

Canada is a diverse country with a multitude of different languages, backgrounds and religions. Israel, too, is a diverse nation, with significant ties to the history of many peoples.

I would like to reaffirm Canada’s commitment to work with Israelis, Palestinians and other partners to uphold the prospects of a two-state solution, and achieve a just and lasting peace.

During this visit, I want to find ways to spark innovation and further collaboration between people, educational institutions and businesses.

In a world of instant, digital communication, face-to-face visits like this are so important. The Canada-Israel relationship is exceptional. It has economic, cultural, scientific, political and strategic dimensions, all of which are grounded in our people-to-people ties.

It is my hope that Canadians and Israelis can continue to build smarter, more caring societies. And I know that we will do so together.

Thank you once again for welcoming us to this great country.