The Yom Kippur War ceremony in Tel Aviv was almost canceled on Sunday after not a single government minister attended causing uproar among the bereaved families.
The ceremony, held annually at the Kiryat Shaul Cemetery which is the resting place of 780 soldiers who were killed during the Yom Kippur War in 1973, was supposed to begin at 4 p.m. but was delayed after government representatives failed to arrive.
Eli Ben-Shem, head of the Yad Labanim Organization which supports bereaved families, said that some of the parents wanted to cancel the ceremony. According to Ben-Shem, Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe Ya’alon was originally supposed to attend the ceremony on behalf of the government but informed him on Friday that he would not be able to come and that Minister-Without-Portfoli Yossi Peled would replace him.
“Ten minutes before the ceremony was set to begin I received a phone call informing me that neither minister would come,” Ben-Shem said. “This is a major embarrassment for the government that not a single minister or Knesset member could find the time to come to the ceremony.”