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The  Peres Center for Peace and Innovation was the host of the award ceremony of ILAN – Israel Latin America Network .

“Global Circle of Friends of Peres Center” was established and is managed by Ms. Yona Bartal, who has worked closely alongside president Shimon Peres for over 20 years. She served also as deputy director-general of his offices for Galilee and Negev regions, lieutenant prime minister, and the deputy director-general at the Presidents House for seven years.

The circle of friends consists of opinion influencers and policy makers, prominent businessmen and visionaries from Israel, London, North America, Europe and China.

The Circle of Friends participates in educational projects of the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, supports and assists at major events such as launches and special visits throughout the Middle East. They have just returned from an important visit to the UAE where they met with policy makers and heads of government. They are about to pay an important visit to Morocco.

Yona Bartal initiates meetings with groundbreaking technological innovators and introduces The Circle to heads of leading companies, delegations and international investors.



ILAN – Israel Latin America Network has awarded on June 9th 2022, several prominent entrepreneurs with the Innovation Award in memory of Shimon Peres. It was a celebration of Israeli innovators, strengthening the relations with Latin America for greater good. The event took place at the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, a beautiful venue on a hill overlooking the Mediterranean in Tel Aviv.

The invitees gathers in front of the building on a sunny day with a refreshing sea breeze  to mingle and enjoy Tania Sax’s saxophone music, until the ceremony started inside the auditorium.

The celebratory gathering of diplomats and Latin American Ambassadors to Israel included also Israel’s deputy minister of defence Alon Shuster, and ILAN founder, businessman and philanthropist, Isaac Assa,  reinforcing the bridges between the countries.  For the first time, the ceremony was held in the Peres Center, for presenting the Shimon Peres lifetime awards by ILAN – the pro-Israeli lobby for promoting Israel - Latin-America relations, awarded to key and world-renowned leaders in the fields of health, environment, economy and technology. Also participating in the ceremony were Chemi Peres, chairman of the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, director of ILAN Dov Litvinof and ambassadors of Latin America to Israel.

Among the award winners were Prof. Shulamit Levenbert of The Technion, who has developed, for the first time ever anywhere in the world, a lab-manufactured steak entrecote; Dr. Amir Kershenovich, manager of the neurosurgery unit at  Shneider hospital who, together with his wife Hila, set up a charity project for complex brain surgery for third-world children; Mr. Henrique Cymerman, an Israeli journalist of a Spanish-Portuguese origin, who works as a field reporter in the Middle East for several communication organizations. Mr. Cymerman serves also as the president of the chamber of commerce for Israel-Jordan and the Persian Gulf states. Another award winner is  Jack Tato Bigio founder, partner and CEO of UBQ Materials – a start-up company for conversion of household waste into reusable materials. Award winner Ela Castellanos is a  newcomer from Mexico, founder of HolaLand website – a platform for connecting South Americans and Israelis and a partner in Canera Caipal venture fund for enterprises in Israel and in Mexico

In his speech, ILAN founder Isaac Assa said that during the past year we have established unique ties directly between Israel and the Latin American countries.  Through ILAN they have established a strategic treaty with several branches throughout America, who will strengthen its economic, political and social robustness.

Chemi Peres, Chairman of Peres Center for peace and Innovation noted that President Peres used to say ‘The future mustn’t just be imagined -  it must be created’. He added that it is a great honour to see the people we are honouring today are creating the future. He said: “Each one of you is striving for change in your field, a change for the better, a change that will effect Israel, Latin America and the entire world”. Chemi addressed Isaac, saying that he was glad to see in Isaac, a dear friend and a partner in a journey into a better future, and to share with Isaac Chemi’s father’s vision of global cooperation and innovation as a way to march forward.

 Deputy Minister of defence Alon Shuster gave his best wishes to the winners of the lifetime achievement Shimon Peres award via ILAN, with the cooperation of Peres Center for Peace and Innovation. He added that the winners are trail blazers proving that a combination of social activism and innovation is a winning recipe for a better world. In the winners’ unique way they are strengthening our important ties with the states of Latin America and with the growing Hispanic population in the United States.

ILAN is a pro-Israeli lobby for Israel-Latin America ties, which was established last year by Isaac Assa, a Jewish Mexican-Syrian businessman and philanthropist. The lobby works for advancing and tightening Israel-Latin America and the USA connection, by exposing to the Latin American states the Israeli innovation in the fields of hi-tech, health, and economics.

Among the distinguished guests in attendance were also : Former Minister Uzi Bar Am; Jonathan Peled- Deputy Director General for Latin America Israel MFA ( Former Israeli Ambassador to Mexico) ; Dov Litvinoff CEO ILAN Israel ; Efrat Duvdevani · Director General at Peres center for peace and innovation; Ayelet Frish spokesperson and media advisor; Former Ambassador from Chile to Israel Sally Bendersky; Former Minister Ophir Pines Paz; Shlomo Sapir - IAI ( Israel Aerospace Industries) ; Edu Pollak Director for Latin America , Spain & Portugal at the hebrew University of Jerusalem; Efi Stenzler former KKL-JNF World World Chairman; Gaby Miodownik & Esteban Socolsky - Netafim; Zeev Kirtchuk Ilan Israel - Latin American Network; Genaro Hurtado Brive Company ( Mexico); Dr. Mira Marcus - Kalish TAU; Monica Nagel - Costa Rica; Deby Roitman ( mexico) and more...

 Following the Awards the guests enjoy the beautiful performed of Moran Levi ( singer) and Itay Abramovitz ( piano) 

Diplomacy.co.il congratulates the winners , ILAN – Israel Latin America Network and the www.peres-center.org on this wonderful event

 Photos by Silvia G. Golan

More Pics at Facebook  Diplomacy Israel / Israel Diplo /  Silvia G. Golan





✼ Three days of music in the magical atmosphere of Ein Karem ✼

The Festival program includes seven concerts of classical music - both western and eastern, alongside special arrangements of folk and popular music, featuring outstanding musicians, led by conductor and percussionist Chen Zimbalista.

The concerts will take place in the court of St. John BaHarim church (in a shaded area)

Ein Karem Music Festival June 3-5, 2022  Shavuot

Music Director: Chen Zimbalista

Tickets: bit.ly/einkaremfest  *6226

St. John BaHarim church  




Friday, June 3rd | 10:30

Spring & Summer - Beethoven, Chopin and Gershwin

Saturday, June 4th | 10:30

Family concert featuring the Music Factory orchestra. Bizet, Chick Corea, Elias, Jenkins and more

Saturday, June 4th | 18:30

Garden Concert 1 - Mozart, Sarasate, Rolnik, Ben Shaul and more, performed by young musicians

Saturday, June 4th | 20:30 

Beirut-Paris - The Music Factory orchestra hosting Tamara Halabi (vocals and oud). Bizet, Elgar, Chick Corea, Elias, Fairuz

Sunday, June 5th | 10:30

Voices of Monks - The music factory orchestra featuring the Magnificat vocalists. Telemann, Elgar, Piazzola

Sunday, June 5th | 18:30 

Garden Concert 2 - Brahms, Schubert, Schuman, Albinoni and Kurzbard, performed by young musicians

Sunday, June 5th | 20:30 

Full of Love - The music factory orchestra featuring Trio Ben Haim - Guy Figer, Yotam Baruch and Ron Trechtman, and the vocalists Aregitu Gebeyehu and Rivka Maru. Mendelsshon, Einstein and Ethiopian folk songs.

Content director and producer: Nofar Cohen

*All concerts will take place in a shaded area in the courtyard of St. John BaHarim, courtesy of Custodia di Terra Santa


Photo: Yanam Zimbalista, Yoel Levy, Ran Shimoni








The Gypsy Kings, led by Andre Reyes, will perform Shlomi Shabat's 'And I Sing' on stage for the first time, in a series of concerts held over Passover 2022. Gypsy Kings has been Israel’s leading band for Spanish music since the 1980s, with numerous popular songs and covers adapted from English, and even a performance in the John Turturro film The Jesus Rolls.



The Gypsy Kings recorded a special international version of Shlomi Shabat’s hit song “And I Sing” in Spanish (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fu8ZsSrhx90 ) . The song took over radio stations and playlists in Israel and was the top song heard in the country for five weeks running. Now the group will perform the song for a live audience for the first time. 


The concerts will be held over four days in Tel Aviv and Haifa: 

April 17-18-19: Heichal Hatarbut - Tel Aviv

April 20: Merkaz Hacongressim - Haifa


Ticket sales starting at 199 NIS:

via phone: *8780 or at www.leaan.co.il 


 Video credit Yuval Arhel


 Video credit  Egoist



 Photo credit: Gypsy Kings - Sergei Demianchuk

Photo credit: Shlomi Shabbat - Gabriel Baherlia




Kfar Maccabiah, April 2022  ‏Nissan 5782

חג הפסח: חג החרות עבור יהודי אוקראינה

Pessach:  Freedom from the war in the Ukraine


Dear Friends,


When we speak of Pessach we generally refer to its message of freedom. In these days before the Festivities of Matzot and Spring in Israel, we receive and send greetings to our esteemed people describing the Chag - in all justice - as "Chag HaCherut", "The Celebration of Freedom", evoking the liberation saga of the Jewish People from the Pharaonic yoke more than 3,300 years ago. That is the central theme of the Haggadah, the story we read with our family and friends in the traditional Passover Seder, stored in our memories with love and warmth since our own childhood. Passover became synonymous with freedom, with multiple meanings in all spheres of our lives. 

This year, we have heard the cry for freedom - the freedom from the horrors of war. Our siblings from Maccabi Ukraine are in real danger - and started fighting for the freedom of their Communities. 

Our best leaders and our Maccabi family in Europe and worldwide have come then into action. Laura Renberg-Dunkelgrün, Maccabi Netherlands CEO, tells us how this glorious work for freedom and safety is being done:



Maccabi Europe hoped, like everyone else, that 2022 would provide us with normality. Planning for the 21st Maccabiah and working directly on the ground with our 37 affiliated countries appeared to be just around the corner. But all that changed on Thursday, February 24th at 8:10am.  David Beesemer, Maccabi Europe Chairman, was contacted by Viktoriya Dyakova (Vika), Maccabi Ukraine Chairperson to make him aware of the Russian invasion and its impending impact on the people of Ukraine, the Jewish Community and the thousands of Maccabi members from 20 Maccabi clubs around the Ukraine.

 Maccabi Europe immediately established a Maccabi Europe Ukraine Task Force led by Dagmar Gavornikova, Maccabi Europe President & Maccabi Slovakia Chairperson. Dagmar was best placed to reach out to Maccabi Ukraine, to establish their immediate needs and to start to plan for their evacuation.

With a plot more believable in a World War II movie, we reached out for support from Maccabi World Union in Israel and then from other Maccabi countries across Europe, including Maccabi Hungary, Poland, Germany, Italy, Holland, Moldova and Romania, asking them to join the Task Force with the key objective of helping people leave the warzone as quickly and as safely as possible. Maccabi Europe had members at each border crossing from Ukraine assisting the refugees in whatever way they could. Often they would wait all night whilst the refugees’ papers were processed.

 The response from the Maccabi community across Europe was overwhelming. Dagmar and the Task Force quickly established safe meeting-points at the borders connected to Ukraine. The first 50 refugees were taken to the safe haven of Bucharest, where they were given food and accommodation. They arrived Sunday, February 27th, at 10am local time-  just 72 hours after the first call was made.  

Since then, hundreds of Jewish refugees have crossed the border and found safety in Amsterdam, Bucharest, Budapest, Frankfurt and many other places - including a large number that recently arrived in Israel. This was done with the help of Maccabi Europe’s Affiliates. On top of the humanitarian cost of war, there is the financial cost, and we are pleased to say that our communities have opened both their hearts and their homes whilst also sending money to support the transportation, housing and feeding of the refugees. 

  In the short term, Maccabi Europe has managed to support and help over 500 people through our Maccabi network. Whilst we are very happy and proud to have played a small part in helping these people, we remain humble, as we are painfully aware that this war has affected millions and is far from over. We have heard of and read about the murders and destruction, and we know there are and will continue to be a lot more people in need of help. Whilst sharing the stories about our Movement’s reaction to the war, we are sensitive to the fact that many ordinary people from every community are doing extraordinary things right now. We will continue to offer support where possible and for as long as necessary.”

Maccabi has responded to the cry of freedom of hundreds in danger during the Russian invasion of the Ukraine. Every Passover Seder with its dinner party is a joyous family and national celebration. If our ancestors during 18 centuries of dispossession, alienation and exile were able to celebrate a national freedom they did not enjoy in their day-to-day lives... then all the more so should we, who live in the era of Jewish national redemption! We can say "Leshanah Haba'ah Biyirushalayim!" ("Next year in Jerusalem") and grasp this dream, this ancient desire, right now...


 May God grant that this Seder inspires us to recover the outstanding significance of the National Freedom of Pessach.

May God grant that we learn to enjoy this present, glorious period in the history of our people, when our national freedom is an everyday reality in our Jewish State.

And May God bless this gathering of our cherished ones around the

Passover Table in loving embrace and meaningful dialogue.


Chag Pessach Sameach!

 Chazak ve'ematz!


Rabbi Carlos A. Tapiero

Deputy Director-General & Director of Education

Maccabi World Union 


Photo  Maccabi Europe 




Tourism Ministry hosts artists and delegations for Israel Calling, a mini Eurovision, April 5-8


Mini Eurovision event “Israel Calling” returns to Israel

Over 20 Eurovision 2022 delegations will land in Israel April 5 for a four-day visit, including Jerusalem and Tel Aviv-Yafo

Eurovision promo concert to take place

 at the Menora Mivtachim Arena, in Tel Aviv on April 7

Jerusalem, March 24, 2022 – The mini Eurovision promo event “Israel Calling”, featuring dozens of European countries, has proven successful among the artists and their delegations and has become a significant growth engine for exposing Eurovision artists among the participating countries and their success in the competition. In addition, Israel Calling has given Israel wide positive exposure in both traditional and social media all over Europe, creating ambassadors of goodwill for Israel among the visiting artists.

The Israel Ministry of Tourism is hosting the competitors and the accompanying journalists who are arriving from source countries for Israel in terms of incoming tourism. All leading influencers in their respective countries, they will upload content from their four-day visit to Israel onto their social media channels throughout the visit. The ministry is hosting them for their tours around Israel, which includes Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, the Dead Sea and more, which will be documented for their millions of followers.

Israel Calling, an initiative of Israeli producer Tali Eshkoli, is taking place with the cooperation of the Israel Ministry of Tourism, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Jerusalem and Heritage and the Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality which will host the main performance.

The climax of their visit will be on April 7, with a giant musical extravaganza, a mini Eurovision, performed live to an Israeli audience at the Menora Mivtachim Arena in Tel Aviv-Yafo and broadcast live on social media channels around Europe. The show will include the songs of artists performing in Eurovision 2022 in May in Italy.

Israel Minister of Tourism Yoel Razvozov: “After a difficult two years, the time has come to go back to normal, to enjoy hosting international events and to bring back life to the tourism industry in Israel. An even such as this signifies the revival of the Israeli tourism industry that needs certainty and continuity, and also opportunities such as this to showcase to the world Israel’s beauty, culture and all the good that we have to offer tourists.”

Minister of Construction and Housing, Jerusalem and Heritage, Zeev Elkin: The municipality of Jerusalem and the Ministry of Jerusalem and Heritage with my lead are happy to host, once again, the Eurovision artists in their visit to Israel, and so opens the 55th anniversary of the unification of Jerusalem. The dozens of delegations will visit the main attractions of the old city, will enjoy the unique beauty of Jerusalem and the rich and magical cultural variety of the capital of Israel.

Vice President of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Head of Communications Department, Noam Katz: The Eurovision Song Contest, with its joy and diversity, presents a liberal world of values with its core being accepting the others, freedom of speech and the will to unite the people of the continent and everyone who shares the same values. Therefore, especially today when the cannons roar, the muses should not stay silent. The arrival of the artists in Israel, under the slogan “Israel Calling”, is a clear statement in favor of peace and against war.

Mayor of Tel Aviv-Yafo, Ron Huldai: The Eurovision Song Contest is not only a song contest but a cultural phenomenon that encourages values of diversity, tolerance, loving and respecting each other, of friendship and coexistence. This competition makes us forget our conflicts for one night, to unite and be proud as Israelis. That’s why we can’t avoid mentioning the horrors that take place in the heart of Europe, in Ukraine. Israel Calling, the special promo event that will bring the best of the Eurovision Song Contest to Tel Aviv-Yafo, a moment before the actual contest, will be a celebration diluted with pain and hope. It will have a say that we should do whatever we can to stop the horrors, to lend a hand and help, to open our hearts and save lives.

Israel Calling initiator and producer Tali Eshkoli: “I am excited once again to bring to Israel a large international event, artists, delegations and journalists from all over Europe for a promo event in advance of Eurovision 2022 and to introduce them to our outstanding Israel experience. We warmly embrace all the artists and their delegations and we are happy for this opportunity to give them an unforgettable experience. I am pleased to produce Israel Calling, particularly after the recent Miss Universe and Eurovision competitions, to continue to showcase to the world that Israel is a wonderful place, unlike any other, to host international productions, to invite the artists to perform in front of a warm and embracing Israeli audience and to promote the values and beautiful colors of the State of Israel. This is going to be a colorful, happy Eurovision extravaganza that promotes connections and love. Welcome back to Israel!”

The complete list of participants will be published gradually in the social media channels:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/israelcalling

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/israelcalling

To buy Tickets :   https://bit.ly/3IOXBS0

Details regarding tickets for DigiTel holders will be published in due course.


The Eurovision Song Contest 2022 will be aired on Kan 11 on May 14th.

For more information: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.