JERUSALEM, Israel – Israel is celebrating 74 years of independence as a modern Jewish state on Thursday.
The celebrations began Wednesday night after a somber Memorial Day dedicated to fallen soldiers and those who lost their lives in terror attacks.
To celebrate independence, Israelis also enjoy hosting barbeques, parties and celebrations at bars across the country.
During a special Independence Day address, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett called Israel "a story of hope, a story of human spirit, a story of surviving against all odds.”
“It’s a story of a nation that built something from nothing, a scattered people returning to our ancient homeland,” he said.
“The state of Israel has given new life to the Jewish people, security to all of Israel’s citizens, and confidence that our best days are yet ahead of us. To every Israeli, every Jew in the world and every friend of Israel I say: Happy Independence Day!’”