For first time, Diaspora Jew to light one of Israel’s Independence Day torches

JERUSALEM (JTA) — For the first time, a Diaspora Jew will be invited to light one of the torches honoring Israeli Independence Day.

Minister of Sports and Culture Miri Regev announced earlier this week that one of the 12 torch lighters will be a representative of Diaspora Jewry as a symbol of Jewish unity.

Selecting a torch lighter to represent the Jews of the Diaspora symbolizes “the unity of the Jewish people as a whole and the fact that Israel is home to all the world’s Jews,” according to a website about the torch lighters.

This year’s Yom Haatzmaut theme is the 50th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem.

Nominations are due by April 3 and can be sent to Masuot@most.gov.il. The Ministerial Committee for Ceremonies and Symbols will make the final selection.

The torch lighter should “personify the concern and work being done for the future of the Jewish People, and reinforce the link between the world Jewry and Israel.”

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