Photo: President Rivlin with Ambassador of Australia H.E. Mr. Paul Griffiths
President of Israel Reuven (Ruvi) Rivlin today, Wednesday 11 November / 24 Cheshvan, received diplomatic credentials from the new ambassadors of of Australia, Guatemala, Malta, Cyprus and Turkmenistan to Israel as they begin their postings, in an official ceremony at Beit HaNasi. Each ambassador was welcomed with the playing of their national anthem by the Israel Police Band and then reviewed an IDF honor guard, smaller in size than normal because of the coronavirus restrictions. After presenting their letters of credence, the ambassadors signed the Beit HaNasi guest book.
Photo: President Rivlin with Ambassador of Malta H.E. Mr. Patrick Cole
Ambassador Patrick Cole of Malta was the first to present his credentials to the president. The president welcomed him to Israel and spoke about the deep connections between the two countries. “I hope you feel at home here. We are neighbors. You know the Middle East very well, and the conflicts between peoples, tribes and states. With the national conflict between Israel and the Arab countries, there has never been a conflict between Judaism and Islam,” said the president.
The ambassador thanked the president, saying “I would like to congratulate you on your moving speech marking Kristallnacht. It left a profound impression on me and will stay in my heart. I congratulate the State of Israel on its normalization agreements with the Gulf states. This is a real change and I hope it is signals more to come. It is important for the region as a whole.”
The next to present his credentials was the Australian ambassador, Paul Griffiths. The president said he was still deeply affected by the warm reception he received when he visited Australia last February, and spoke about how much he was impressed by the Australian people.
Speaking about the Malka Leifer affair, the president said, “I would like to be clear that Israeli law will be respected as well as Australian law, and that both countries respect international law. I believe the matter will be resolved in a matter of months and I am in contact with the minister of justice and all other parties involved in the case. The whole process is transparent and you can also follow events as they happen.”
Photo: President Rivlin with Ambassador of Guatemala H.E. Mrs. Olga Julissa Anzueto Aguilar
Ambassador Olga Julissa Anzueto Aguilar of Guatemala then presented her credentials. The president welcomed her, and sheh thanked the president saying that since the official residence has now moved to Jerusalem, she has “the privilege of living in this wonderful city.”
Photo: President Rivlin with Ambassador of Cyprus H.E. Mrs. Theodora Constantinidou
After that, Theodora Constantinidou, the new Cypriot ambassador was received by the president and presented her credentials. The president asked to send his warmest wishes to his old friend the president of Cyprus, saying “The trilateral relations between Cyprus, Greece and Israel are very important to us. We are not just neighbors, we are good friends who work together in a wide range of fields, and will continue to do so.” The ambassador thanked the president, saying “In Cyprus and at the Cypriot embassy, you and your country will always have an open ear and a hand stretched out in friendship. You can count on it.”
Photo: President Rivlin with Ambassador of H.E. Mr. Turkmenistan Komekov Toyly Babayevich
Finally, the Ambassador of Turkmenistan, Komekov Toyly Babayevich, presented his credentials. The president extended an invitation to the President of Turkmenistan, through the new ambassador, to visit Jerusalem, and the ambassador thanked him and said that his president attaches great importance to relations with Israel.
Photo credit: Mark Neyman (GPO)