(Communicated by the Prime Minister's Media Adviser)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, today (Monday, 30 June 2014), met with members of Israeli Flying Aid
and with Council of Youth Movements in Israel
representatives who have joined in the effort to assist Syrian refugees.
IFA founder and CEO Gal Lousky updated Prime Minister Netanyahu on the organization, which aids populations in conflict zones in countries that do not have diplomatic relations with Israel and in countries that bar the introduction life-saving assistance, and told him that IFA was the first non-profit association to assist Syrian refugees following the start of events in April 2011. Lousky added that since then IFA has delivered to them thousands of tons dry food, medicines and sanitary products.
CYMI Secretary General Naftali Deri, said that last December, IFA appealed to Israel's youth movements, which responded by joining in the extraordinary effort in which approximately 70 tons of coats, sleeping bags and blankets were collected in two weeks for the refugees. He added that the second part of the operation – focusing on the collection of approximately 450 tons of dry food – is currently getting underway.
Prime Minister Netanyahu said, "There is a line that separates light from darkness and this line is found – in the clearest possible manner – on the Golan Heights. One hundred meters from the border is a field hospital with IDF doctors and nurses in which Jews and non-Jews care for those from the Syrian side who have been wounded and injured. Small children, some of them amputees, who have been injured come with their parents, some of whom have also been injured, and receive treatment in Israel. They all say the same thing, 'We do not understand. We were always told that you are devils and here we see that you are human beings. You are helping us. You, our greatest enemies, are giving us the assistance that we would expect from our own people.' This is the true humanity of the State of Israel, of Israeli youth and the citizens of Israel, and this is the truth. Everything else is propaganda. This is the truth in the great struggle between civilization and barbarism."
MK Yoel Hasson, who has been observing the activities of the IFA, said, "I think that there is no message like this in any other country in the world. We have fought with Syria more than once and the message here is that we can rise above this. We are not changing anything. Rather, we are creating a new thing that is almost unprecedented. There is nothing like it. The young people can be proud that they are part of this message. Gal can be very proud of IFA's continuing activity and of its members, and you, Mr. Prime Minister can go home satisfied that you have such a splendid people to lead. Thank you for the spirit, the substance and the hope."