Mr SOUTHWICK (Caulfield) — It was my pleasure to play host at a very special exhibit in Queen’s Hall celebrating the 65th anniversary of Israel’s Independence Day, Yom Ha’atzmaut. Today is the 65th anniversary of Yom Ha’atzmaut — 65 years since a Jewish homeland was established in the ancestral home of the Jewish people.
In little over six decades the people of Israel have made an outstanding contribution to the world as leaders in science, environmental research and finance. On a per capita basis, Israel is a world leader in venture capital and is an entrepreneurs paradise with a business spirit.
The exhibit in Queens Hall celebrates these and other topics, including innovation and environment, Jerusalem, humanitarian aid, Israeli Arabs, Jewish refugees, the West Bank, evolution, desalinated water and peaceful coexistence.
A quick stroll around Queens Hall demonstrates these facets and how Israel has been at the forefront of innovation and new ideas. I had the opportunity to take the Premier on a tour of this exhibit, and it is my hope to one day give him a firsthand experience with a visit to Israel.
I want to congratulate the Zionist Council of Victoria and the Zionist Federation of Australia for curating the exhibit and for their strong advocacy for Israel and its people. Chag sameach and kol hakavod.