This evening, Thursday, 18th May 2023 to the evening of Friday, 19th May 2023, the Jewish people will be celebrating Yom Yerushalayim – Jerusalem Day. The day celebrates the reunification of Jerusalem.
When Israel was reborn in 1948, it was invaded by surrounding Arab nations. Jordan was one of the armies that attacked Israel and illegally annexed East Jerusalem and parts of Judea and Samaria (the West Bank). In 1967, during the Six Day War, Israel repelled Jordan and other invading Arab armies and reclaimed their capital, Jerusalem.
Jerusalem Day is held each year to mark the reunification of Jerusalem under Israeli ownership.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu put out this message for Yom Yerushalayim 2023:
“Citizens of Israel, on Jerusalem Day we again raise Jerusalem above our highest joy. However, the truth is that our people have done this day in day out, year in year out, for hundreds of years: ‘Next year in Jerusalem’.
Indeed, we have returned to our country. By the middle of the 19th century, there was already a Jewish majority in Jerusalem. Of course, it took another 100 years until we established our state with Jerusalem as our official capital. It took another 19 years until that fateful day in 1967, when we liberated Jerusalem and reunited it. We reunited it. It broke new horizons. It became a city, a giant metropolis in Israel. We are building it up. We are building in it and we are allowing all of its residents better lives in our eternal capital.
We are committed to safeguarding the security of Jerusalem, to ensuring its prosperity and to continuing its momentum. We are also doing this against all of the threats around us, most recently in Operation Shield and Arrow, but constantly. While the threats are certainly not ceasing, our ability to deal confront our enemies, repel them and ensure our security in Jerusalem and throughout our state is a constant struggle; together we can win.
This is also a splendid day on which to celebrate our return to our eternal capital, which has been our capital for over 3,000 years. There has been nothing like this in the world but it is here, in the center of our world, Jerusalem.
Happy Jerusalem Day.”