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Reuven Rivlin: the affable face of Israel's far right

Incoming Israeli President Reuven Rivlin gestures during a ceremony at the Knesset, Israel's parliament, in Jerusalem on July 24, 2014Reuven Rivlin, who was sworn in on Thursday as Israel’s 10th president, is a far-right hawk with a quirky sense of humour who is known as the guard-dog of democracy. Popular and affable, 74-year-old “Ruby” Rivlin was a veteran member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s rightwing Likud party and a former parliament speaker. He has made no secret of his vision of a Greater Israel encompassing all the territory between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean. “Rivlin won’t be the State of Israel’s president, but Greater Israel’s president,” wrote commentator Ari Shavit in Haaretz newspaper about the largely ceremonial post.

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