US support for Israel by passing a bill providing $225 million for the Iron Dome was essential, Finance Minister Yair Lapid wrote in a letter to US senators and said in a phone call with Senate Majority Harry Reid Saturday.

"This bill symbolizes once again the depths of friendship and strategic relations between our two countries," Lapid wrote to Speaker of the House John Boehner, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and others.

The Iron Dome system "has proven crucial in our ability to defend ourselves against the indiscriminate rocket fire from Gaza," Lapid explained. "The people of Israel deeply appreciate the support of the US Senate during Operation Protective Edge."

"These have been difficult days facing an enemy who cared neither for the lives of our civilians or its own, consistently choosing death over life," the Finance Minister added.

In the letters, Lapid called for Gaza to be demilitarized as part of economic growth and development to the benefit of Israelis and Gazans.


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