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Peru’s bicentennial celebrated at the Center of Art and Culture in Herzliya with gala party featuring traditional music and food


A historic celebration was held in Herzliya this week, as the Embassy of Peru in Israel marked the bicentennial--200 years of Peru’s independence. To celebrate the occasion, diplomats, civil society leaders, Peruvians living in Israel, and other friends of the embassy joined in a gala celebration at the TEO Center of Art and Culture in Herzliya, hosted by H.E. Mr. Carlos Chavez Taffur and his wife Mrs. Cynthia Hardman.


Ambassador Carlos Chavez-Taffur opened the evening with a note of gratitude for the measures taken by the government of Israel to protect the diplomatic community with vaccines, and that the Covid-19 situation has reached a point where such a celebration would be possible.


The ambassador noted the pivotal role of Peru in sparking freedom from colonialism in Latin America two centuries ago with the bold actions of national heroes like José de San Martín, and the impact on the region. The ambassador highlighted that foreign ministry of Peru has been active for nearly as long, founded less than a week after Peru’s initial declaration of independence in 1821. 



The future brings both challenges and opportunities, and Ambassador Chavez once again thanked Israel for sharing best practices regarding Covid-19 vaccination, stressing that Peru has now applied “almost 12 million doses, with 4.5 million people already fully vaccinated. The outgoing government has acquired almost 90 million doses, which means that the vaccination of the entire Peruvian population has been ensured.”


Among the many examples of the strong and multifaceted ties between Israel and Peru, the ambassador mentioned the VI Peru-Israel Political Consultation Mechanism held virtually this year, as well as progress on numerous bilateral agreements including the Air Services Agreement, the Agreement on Security and Internal Order, the Agreement on Judicial Assistance, and the Agreement on Disaster Risk Management, academic and technological cooperation by universities and private businesses, and security coordination, such as the joint counterterrorism training program held this year in Lima with the Peruvian Army, and joint training in military epidemiological best practices.


In closing, the ambassador focused on the Peruvian expatriate community in Israel and their role in promoting relations between the two countries. In particular, he lauded the appointment of Dr. Judy Moriano as Peru’s Honorary Consul in Ramla. Dr. Moriano, who is the first foreign consular agent in the city of Ramla, will help provide services to the central and southern districts of Israel. With both Israel and Peru enjoying newly installed governments, the ambassador expressed optimism that the strong bilateral relations between the countries would only increase, as new avenues for cooperation are explored.


Israel’s Minister of Communications, Yoaz Hendel, spoke on behalf of the government of Israel. Minister Hendel began his remarks with several sentences of Spanish before switching to English. Noting that the Israeli connection to Peru dates back to Peru’s initial support for the creation of Israel under UNSCOP, the minister highlighted the long partnership under the auspices of the Mashav program, through which thousands of Peruvians received high quality technological training in Israel which they were then able to implement back in Peru.


Noting further that Peru is one of the founding members of the Pacific Alliance, Minister Hendel shared Israel’s pride in acting as an observer in the alliance, and aspirations to upgrade to being an "associated country" going forward.


Remarking on shared “fundamental values of democracy and the defense of human rights alongside a determined and unrelenting rejection of, and fight against, terrorism”, the minister also expressed Israel’s support for Peru's stance with regard to the situation in Venezuela, the "Lima Group" efforts directed at the harsh humanitarian situation in Venezuela. In closing, Minister Hendel offered the traditional Salud greetings and a toast was raised to health and prosperity in both countries.


Guests then enjoyed the celebration, with Peruvian cuisine, drinks and music.  There was no lack of the traditional Pisco sour and chilcano cocktails, nor the Ceviche. The celebration was held in a unique outdoor space within the Center of Art and Culture, decorated with red and white floral arrangements in Peru’s national colors. Throughout the evening traditional Peruvian delicacies were enjoyed, while Peruvian music played. Scenic images highlighting Peru’s natural beauty were projected onto a wall, bringing the tastes, sounds and sights of Peru to Israel for this unique celebration.


Among the many distinguished guests in attendance were H.E. Mr. Gil Haskel, Chief of State Protocol at the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Moshe Fadlon, Mayor of the city of Herzliya; Minister of Communications Yoaz Hendel; Ambassador Modi Ephraim, head of the Latin American and Caribbean desk of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Nadav Tamir, Director of International Affairs of the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation; Monsignor Tomasz Grysa from the Apostolic Nunciature representing the Holy See in Israel; Father Armando Medina Vargas Domus Galilaece, Vice Director of the Monastery Korazin; Samuel Yecutieli,  Representative of Venezuela in Israel; Prof. Ruth Fine  Director of The Hebrew University of jerusalem - Faculty of Humanities - Department of Spanish and Latin America Studies; Patricia Ashkenazi Darwish representative of the IWO  International Women Club - Spanish Committee;  Itsik Kamilian, CEO of the Ambassadors Club; Gabriel Hayon- President of The Diplomatic Institute; Alberto Blank, Corporate Regional Director at Rafael Advanced Defense Systems; Karin Chen from the Israel Export Institute, Roni Kaplan, former IDF spokesperson in spanish , Gil Sztejman Member of the Beer Sheva City Council and wife, and many foreign Ambassadors, militars and business leaders.


The Staff of www.diplomacy.co.il  congratulates the government, people, and Embassy of Peru on the occasion of the historic bicentenial. 


Steven Aiello




Photos by Silvia Golan

More pics at Facebook Israel Diplo &  Silvia G. Golan