On Sunday, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin will conduct a candle-lit tribute to Rabin and the following day there will be a state memorial ceremony.
Rabin was gunned down following an appearance at a Tel Aviv peace rally by Yigal Amir, who was opposed to the government’s negotiations with the Palestinians. A left-wing organization that organised the march, about 6,000 people attended the event.
“Rabin was the one who cleared our path to Jerusalem [in 1948], he’s the one who united Jerusalem for us [in 1967], and he’s the one who commanded us, the supporters and opponents of the Oslo [Peace Accords]”, Rivlin said. “Israeli politicians are becoming more and more extreme”.
“Only a political process that will lead to the end of our control over millions of Palestinians will end the bloody conflict between the two peoples and allow Israelis and Palestinians to live in peace and quiet”.
He is presently serving a life sentence.
Dov Kredo, 60, who attended the peace rally where Rabin was killed, came from Galilee in northern Israel, and said he feels “very pessimistic” about the current situation.
“The path that was stopped in 1995 is very much the path that needs to be taken today”, Peace Now spokeswoman Anat Ben Nun told.
The recent spate of violence includes almost daily attacks by Palestinians and violent clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinian youth protesters.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the assassination of his predecessor was “a wound that won’t heal; it leaves us all bruised and in pain”.
“We are in the throes of a struggle in Jerusalem for Jerusalem, and Rabin [was] one of its great fighters and liberators”, Rivlin said, referring to the weeks of Palestinian unrest and violence against Israelis in the capital. One Israeli Jew and one Eritrean have been killed after being mistaken for attackers.