Israel lights candles for Rabin 25 years after assassination

Israelis lit thousands of candles on Thursday to mark the 25th anniversary of the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, who was shot dead by a Jewish extremist as he pursued peace with the Palestinians

TEL AVIV, Israel -- Israelis lit thousands of candles on Thursday to mark the 25th anniversary of the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, who was shot dead by a Jewish extremist as he pursued peace with the Palestinians.

The Yitzhak Rabin Center planned to light 25,000 candles in the central Tel Aviv square where he was assassinated on Nov. 4, 1995, after addressing a peace rally, and which is now named for him. Israel holds memorial ceremonies to mark the anniversary according to the Jewish calendar.

Rabin was born in Jerusalem in 1922 and commanded troops in the 1948 war that surrounded Israel's creation. He rose through the ranks of the military, serving as chief of staff during Israel's victory over neighboring Arab states in the 1967 war.

As prime minister he signed the 1993 Oslo accords with the Palestinians, sharing a Nobel Prize the following year for what was widely seen as an historic breakthrough in resolving the decades-old conflict.

He was gunned down by Yigal Amir, an ultra-nationalist who is now serving a life sentence.