(Communicated by the Prime Minister's Media Adviser)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Culture and Sports Minister Limor Livnat, earlier this month in Jerusalem, held a festive reception for Israel's delegation to the Paralympics, which opens August 29 in London.
The 25 Paralympic athletes who will represent Israel in London will compete in nine sports: Road Cycling, Rowing, Sailing, Wheelchair Tennis, Table Tennis, Shooting, Swimming, Equestrian and Athletics.Israel Paralympic Committee (IPC) Chairman Danny Ben-Abu thanked Prime Minister Netanyahu and Culture and Sports Minister Livnat for equalizing conditions for Paralympic and Olympic athletes. "You deserve great thanks for this," he said.
Prime Minister Netanyahu added: "You demand of yourselves and achieve things physically and, first and foremost, mentally. From my point-of-view, you are already champions and you have achieved major victories. I also promise you that we will give you all possible support, you, your trainers and your accompanying staff.
"But you asked from something modest - you said that you want your families, neighbors and friends, and all of Israel, to be able to watch you on TV, and this is my small contribution - there will be broadcasts. I want all Israelis to see our champions. I hope that you bring home medals but from my point-of-view, you already have. Good luck to you, Israel and the human spirit."
Culture and Sports Minister Livnat also used the occasion to thank Israel's Olympic athletes, who have recently returned from London: "You have returned with very fine achievements and I would like to offer a brave and large embrace to all of the athletes who were there and did their best in order to succeed."
The Minister added: "Today we provide equal medical and professional services for Olympic and Paralympic athletes. I see you as an inseparable part of Israeli and Olympic sports. In my view, you rise above all other athletes with your ability to overcome your handicaps. You do this so well. You do amazing things and are a model for the emulation and admiration of our youth and all those who encounter difficulties. I love you and wish you success."