MK Yoav Ben-Tsur removed his bill that would have Victory Day be marked on its Hebrew date – 26 of Iyyar – as opposed to its Gregorian date – May 9 – from the Knesset’s agenda Wednesday, following protestations by immigrants from the Former Soviet Union.
Victory Day marks Nazi Germany’s capitulation to the Soviet Union at the end of World War II, and was a major holiday in the Soviet Union. In Israel, Victory Day has been a national holiday since 2000. Veterans of World War Two mark the day by marching in parades and participating in ceremonies.
The explanatory portion of Ben-Tzur’s bill, which was approved by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation earlier this week, stated: "In a Jewish State, which rose from the ashes, there is great importance in marking Victory Day on the Hebrew date and not the secular date. It is more than a symbolic statement and is an expression of the victory of our spirit."