The Presidents of the State of Israel
Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs
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 The Presidents of the State of Israel

 

The Nasi (President) is the head of state, with the Presidency symbolizing the nation's unity, above and beyond party politics. He bears the ancient title of the head of the Sanhedrin, the supreme legislative and judicial body of the Jewish people in the Land of Israel in ancient times. The President, who may serve two consecutive five-year terms, is elected by a simple majority of the Knesset from among candidates nominated on the basis of their personal stature and lifelong contribution to the state.

Presidential duties, which are mostly ceremonial and formal, are defined by law. They include opening the first session of a new Knesset; accepting the credentials of foreign envoys; signing treaties and laws adopted by the Knesset; appointing, on recommendation of the appropriate bodies, judges, the governor of the Bank of Israel and the heads of Israel's diplomatic missions abroad; and pardoning prisoners, on advice of the Minister of Justice. In addition, the President performs public functions and informal tasks such as hearing citizens' appeals, lending prestige to community organizations and supporting campaigns to improve the quality of life in society at large.

Over the years, Israel's Presidents have each brought their own outlook and areas of interest to the position they filled, thus expanding the scope of Presidential functions and the President's social and cultural impact. By virtue of their personalities, skills and talents, Israel's seven Presidents have endowed the office with additional meaning and style, seeking to address questions of social cohesion, Jewish identity and culture, Israel's relations with the Jewish Diaspora and other key issues.

 

Chaim Weizmann
CHAIM WEIZMANN
  Itzhak Ben-Zvi
YITZHAK BEN-ZVI
  Zalman Shazar
ZALMAN SHAZAR
 

EPHRAIM KATZIR
  Yitzhak Navon
YITZHAK NAVON
  Chaim Herzog
CHAIM HERZOG
 
Ezer Weizman
EZER WEIZMAN
  Moshe Katsav
MOSHE KATSAV
  Shimon PeresSHIMON PERES
 

  Reuven Rivlin
REUVEN RIVLIN
 


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