Israeli Opposition Leader and Zionist Union Chairman Isaac Herzog speaks at the AIPAC Policy Conference 2017 in Washington.

AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File

Israel opposition leader named head of Jewish Agency

June 24, 2018 - 12:23 pm
Categories: 

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's opposition leader has been appointed chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel, a non-governmental organization responsible for bridging Israel and Jewish communities worldwide.

The organization issued a statement Sunday that its board of governors unanimously elected Isaac Herzog, a former Labor Party leader, as its new chairman.

Herzog was selected over Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz, a close ally of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. His appointment is seen as a defeat for Netanyahu, but Herzog vowed to work closely with his political rival.

Herzog, who starts Aug. 1, succeeds outgoing chairman, former Soviet political prisoner Natan Sharansky.

The Jewish Agency is a non-governmental umbrella organization that works closely with the Israeli government to encouraging Jewish immigration and developing ties with Diaspora communities. It had a $362 million budget in 2018.

© Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.