- Written by Silvia G Golan & Stella Szpira
On May 23 a reception commemorating the May Revolution of 1810 was held in the elegant residence of the new Ambassador of Argentina in Israel, H.E. Mr. Mariano A. Caucino and his wife Mrs. Barbara Caucino. The event commemorated the first successful revolution in the process of independence of the countries of South America, which until then depended on the king of Spain
As is traditional in this festive day, each gift was given an “escarapela” with the Argentinian national symbol - the blue and white colors of the Argentine Flag. The escarapela’s were given to each by members of the Embassy to be worn on the chest. The residence, located in Herzliya Pituach, was also adorned with vases whose interior highlighted blue and white flowers
Argentine musicians, who came especially for the event, Federico Mizrahi and Gustavo (bandoneon), together with the singer Bar Pinto, delighted the audience with their songs, especially tangos and milongas.
The Minister of Science, Technology and Space Ofir Akunis, a member of the Israeli parliament of Argentinean origin Haim Yelin, and the Head of the Protocol for the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Meron Reuben, arrived as guests of honor.
Among the guests were Dani Gazit, former Ambassador of Israel in Argentina, the producers Yair Dori and Freddy Zyskrot, the Executive Director of the Israel Latin American Chamber of Commerce Gabriel Hayon, Leon Amiras and Mario Lev, Olei; the businessman Carlos Begas, Superintendent Moti Meiry representative of the Israeli Police, the singer Rachi, psychologist-actress Eleonora Berlante, filmmaker Jorge Gurvich, as well as clerics of Argentinean origin, ambassadors, representatives of the JNF-KKL, business people and other prominent members of the Argentinean and South American community in Israel.
There was plenty of Quilmes beer, exquisite homemade empanadas of meat, corn, cheese and onion and the delicious “alfajores de maicena”.
The ambassador offered a warm welcome to the guests, saying: "Argentina celebrates 70 years of diplomatic relations with Israel, at this moment the relationship between the countries is the best throughout the 70 years, and proof of this is the visit from Prime Minister Netanyahu to Buenos Aires, the first of an Israeli prime minister in all of history, who chose to begin his tour of Latin America in Buenos Aires.
I congratulate the Argentine community in Israel, having already had the opportunity to meet several members of the community who occupy prominent positions in a variety of areas."
The Ambassador expressed that he would like to deepen the bilateral relationship and promoting shared values of respect for human rights, human dignity, and progress, in addition to strengthening the ties of scientific, technological and educational cooperation.
He recalled that Argentina was not exempt from acts of extremism, mentioning the attacks on the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires in 1992 and the AMIA building in 1994 that were blown up by terrorists, killing more than 100 people and leaving hundreds of wounded.
He expressed that he pleads for the fight against terror highlighting the international effort to strengthen the security of our peoples
He thanked the members of the Jewish community in Argentina, stating that without their talented members, Argentina and the world would not be the same.
Then the Minister of Science, Technology, and Space, Ofir Akunis, addressed a few words congratulating the new Argentine ambassador in Israel in his new administration mentioning the special bonds of friendship of the two countries:
“It is an honor and my pleasure to participate this evening in Argentina’s 208th National Day celebrations, as well as celebrating 69 years of diplomatic relations between our two countries. Over the years, these relations have been expressed through active, creative and robust cooperation in many different areas. This relationship has also been significantly strengthened through the contributions of the large and warm Jewish community in Argentina, as well as those of the many Argentinian expats living in Israel.
On this occasion, I feel an inevitable obligation to remember and remind us all of the tragic terrorist attack on the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires in 1992 and the Jewish Community Center in 1994, which took the lives of so many and left an open wound in both Argentina and Israel. This year, on the 26th anniversary of the attack on the embassy, an Israeli delegation made up of family members of the victims visited Argentina. The presence of many official representatives in the ceremony that was held at the National Remembrance Museum, demonstrated the commitment of the present government in Argentina to the memory of this tragic event. We are all now full of hope that after so many long years of waiting, the investigation of these attacks will soon be completed and those responsible will finally be brought to justice. Unfortunately, Iran, which was responsible for these attacks in the 90’s, continues until this day to threaten regional stability by means of its use of terrorism and outright military force.
Your Excellency the Ambassador and respected guests, over the past year, following the change in government in Argentina, we have seen a significant continuation in the improvement of relations between our two countries: For the first time, an acting Prime Minister of Israel visited the South American continent and chose to begin his visit in Argentina. At the beginning of this year, the Vice President of Argentina, Gabriela Michetti, visited Israel as the head of an economic delegation. And at the same time, expectations continue to rise over the creation of ever closer and warmer relations between us, an increase in trade, cultural and scientific exchanges and of course a rise in reciprocal tourism.
In conclusion, Your Excellency the Ambassador, again, please convey the best wishes of the Government and the people of Israel to the government and the people of Argentina on this, your National Day. We wish you many years of peace, stability, security, and prosperity.
At the end of the event, some guests talked about the Argentina - Israel friendly football match, which was sold out within hours of opening the sale lines
Israeli fans will have the opportunity to see global stars Lionel Messi, who plays for Barcelona; Sergio “Kun” Aguero of Manchester City in the United Kingdom; and Angel Di Maria of Paris Saint-Germain. The match comes just one week before the start of the World Cup, so the Argentines will fly directly from Israel to Russia. The Israeli event organizer, Cometc, also posted match details on its website.
www.diplomacy.co.il staff congratulates the Argentinian Government together with The Ambassador and his family, the Embassy Staff and the people of Argentina on this festive occasion. .
Photos by Silvia G. Golan
- Written by Prime Minister's Media Adviser
Paraguay helped Jews escape Nazi Germany. We will never forget this. You did this before the Holocaust, during the Holocaust, and after the Holocaust. It was an act of benevolence and mercy that is forever etched in our hearts.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara, today (Monday, 21 May 2018), along with Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes, attended the opening of the Paraguayan Embassy in Jerusalem (Malha Technology Park). Prime Minister Netanyahu and Paraguayan President Cartes unveiled the plaque and signed the guestbook.
PM Netanyahu with Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes at the opening of the Paraguayan Embassy in Jerusalem.
Photo credit: Kobi Gideon (GPO)
- Written by Prime Minister's Media Adviser
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara, today (Wednesday, 16 May 2018), at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, attended a reception for the Guatemalan delegation on the occasion of the opening of the Guatemalan Embassy in Jerusalem.
Prime Minister Netanyahu:
"Toda raba, muchas gracias. Muchas gracias, President Jimmy Morales.
Today you made history, and you feel the friendship, Amistad that goes back 70 years and will continue now into the future. This is what this day is about. It’s honoring the past and seizing the future. We honor the pas.
We are now in the King David Hotel. It’s called the King David hotel because 3,000 years ago, King David, outside this window, built our capital, our ancient capital. And it’s been the capital of the Jewish people ever since.
The kings of Israel, the prophets of Israel, the heroes of Israel fought for this city and preached here the great truths of humanity.
We lost our independence; the city was destroyed; the Temple was destroyed. This happened almost 2,000 years ago. And after it happened, a group of rabbis were looking at the ruins of the Temple. A fox came out. The rabbis wept. A fox, from the ruins. They all wept. But it is said that one rabbi, Rabbi Akiva, he smiled, he laughed. They asked him, Rabbi, why are you smiling, why are you laughing? He said, because salvation will come. Our people will come back. Jerusalem will be rebuilt. This is what we did.
And 70 years ago Jerusalem again became the capital of the independent Jewish state, and what a glorious capital it’s become, what a glorious state Israel has become.
The exiles have ingathered in the Land of Israel. We rebuilt our national independence and built one of the most thriving, powerful states, not only in this region, but a global force in the world.
We are seizing the future and we are seizing it together with you, Guatemala.
We talked about what we can do now for the future. We have many plans. We’ve begun carrying out those plans. I intend to follow your visit here, by coming to Guatemala tomorrow. I invite you all to come with me.
Our plans require many things, they require the mind and they require the heart, but the most important thing they require is first of all to honor the past. And I think we’re doing that today. But in order to seize the future, a future of prosperity, a future of progress, a future of peace, we must also confront the enemies of peace, and this is something that Israel is doing from the heart of the whirlwind. We have been forced to defend ourselves again in the last few days.
[Translation from Hebrew]
I am happy to say that today, at least, we had a day of relative calm along the Gazan border. That’s good. It happened because we were properly organized, and because of the determination of the IDF soldiers who are defending our borders.
They are not defending us from some civilian demonstrations. This is a warlike move by the Hamas. The Hamas spokesperson said today that about 50 of the 60 who were killed are Hamas operatives. We have similar figures. That is why Israel will continue to defend itself for as long as necessary and will not allow those who call for its destruction to storm its borders and threaten our communities.
We will defend the State of Israel.
[End of translation]
Mr. President, this is an opportunity to tell you how deeply we feel about Guatemala, about our friendship. Also about Latin America. You know that last year, I took the visit, the first visit of an Israeli prime minister, can you imagine, south of Texas? Well, what I discovered is enormous reservoirs of goodwill, enormous reservoirs of hope, enormous reservoirs of positive attitudes towards Israel.
So we intend to come to Guatemala, we talked about it in a meeting of the Latin American countries, to see that friendship blossom, first in Guatemala, and then everywhere else in Latin America. You are the bridgehead.
Thank you for coming here. Thank you for your friendship.
This year in Guatemala."
Photos credit: Haim Zach / Amos Ben-Gershom (GPO)
- Written by Silvia G Golan
The President of Panama, Juan Carlos Varela, has arrived in Israel in order to reinforce the economic relations between the two countries. During the visit, a bilateral free-trade agreement will be signed for the first time between Panama and Israel. This is the first agreement of its kind to be signed by Israel with any country in Latin America.
During his visit, President Varela will be accompanied by the Vice President of Panama, Isabel Saint Malo, Augusto Arosemena, the Minister of Commerce & Industry; the Minister of Agriculture Development, Enrique Charles, as well as a delegation of businessmen.
A special economic event held at the Hilton Hotel in Tel Aviv, at the invitation of the President of Panama, for the purpose of exposing Panama to investments. Panama's Ambassador to Israel, Mrs. Adis Urieta Vega, advised that among the subjects which were presented at the Conference are: cyber protection, tourism, medical devices, clean technology, and water.
The president of Panama, H.E. Mr. Juan Carlos Varela Rodriguez, visited Israel for several high-level meetings, and to advance diplomatic and economic cooperation between the two nations.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with President Varela at the Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem. They held both a private meeting and an expanded meeting with their entourages. During the meetings, the following were signed:
* A bilateral free trade agreement – The agreement will lift restrictions on trade between Israel and Panama, in both directions, and enable free trade.
* A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on establishing a center for agricultural excellence in Panama. Israel will establish in Panama a center that will combine Israeli technologies and training. This would be the first such center in Latin America and is expected to significantly assist agriculture in Panama.
During his visit, President Varela visited Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, toured the Holocaust History Museum, participated in a memorial ceremony in the Hall of Remembrance, visited the Children's Memorial, and signed the Yad Vashem Guest Book.
As a guest of the Keren Kayemet Le’Israel-Jewish National Fund (KKL-JNF), President Varela planted a tree in the Grove of Nations in Jerusalem as part of his first official visit to Israel. President Varela also requested the help of KKL-JNF in order to plant a forest the size of “one million hectares”in Panama, utilizing the professional knowledge and international experience KKL-JNF holds in the field of forestation.
In addition, President Varela and his wife Mrs. Lorena Castilla de Varela joined Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and his wife Nehama for a dinner in their honor at the President’s residence.
Panama is located in the center of the American continent, which makes this a strategic location. Panama has a sophisticated banking system, has had a fully-dollarized economy (since 1904), a sympathetic government and extensive trade relations with the entire continent. It is considered to be the Latin investment capital. The expansion of the Canal and the establishment of the Diamond Exchange in the country – are opening up business opportunities in these areas as well. Panama has the second largest free-trade zone in the world.
Photos by Silvia G. Golan
- Written by Silvia Golan & Amalia Cedar Kellner
On the occasion of Europe Day 2018, the Delegation of the European Union to Israel hosted a gala celebration at the home of the EU Ambassador to Israel, H.E. Mr. Emanuele Giaufret, and his wife Min-ja, at his residence in Herzliya Pituach.
Ambassador Giaufret opened his remarks by observing the incredible growth in Israel since he had visited 10 years prior. He noted the dynamic physical and economic progress that Israel has been undergoing as positive signs for the future.
The ambassador listed several challenges that the European Union has faced in recent years--economic, demographic, security, political. But he observed that these challenges have resulted in a more resilient union. Observing the diversity of the populations of the European Union, Ambassador Giaufret said that this called for the EU and its members to display “compromise, trust and goodwill.” Looking to the future, the ambassador pointed out that regardless of what uncertainties might be faced, a united Europe will be better positioned to succeed than one divided.
A key point of unity identified by Ambassador Giaufret was unity of values, including a commitment to secure, pluralistic, liberal democracy. He noted that these values were shared with Israel as well, and reiterated the European hope to see an independent Palestinian state succeeding side by side a safe and secure Israel. To get there, the ambassador stressed the importance of diplomacy as the primary tool for communication and mutual success.
In a pre-recorded video message, European Union High Representative and Vice-President Federica Mogherini highlighted the need for European countries to pool their resources to best address global challenges. In her message, Mogherini highlighted the potential for advancing multilateralism, peace, sustainable development, free trade, human rights and democracy if European member states continue to work together.
Israeli Minister of Energy, Infrastructure and Water, Yuval Steinitz, addressed the audience on behalf of the Israeli government. Offering congratulations to Europe and the European Union, Minister Steinitz touched upon recent interactions with Iran and the Iranian nuclear deal. The minister mentioned that that Iran’s regional aspirations and actions posed a threat to Israel and many other states in the region, and thus to global peace and stability. He emphasized that Israel appreciated Europe’s support for its right to self-defense. He talked about the Iranian pursuit of nuclear weapons, and emphasized that diplomacy was needed to ensure that Iran would never resume that pursuit, for the sake of regional and global peace and stability. In closing, the minister returned to the topic of energy, pledging that in light of the recent finding and development of Mediterranean gas fields, Israel would be a stable future source of energy for Europe.
Following the speeches, the European Union and Israeli anthems were played, and guests enjoyed music and dinner at the ambassador’s residence.
The festive atmosphere was enhanced by blue and yellow floral arrangements, matching the EU colors.
Among the distinguished guests were Ambassador Meron Reuven, chief of protocol for the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mrs. Rodica Radian-Gordon, head of the Europe Division at the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Chairman of the Israel-EU Chamber of Commerce Gad Proper; Ambassador Yitzhak Eldan, head of the Israeli Center for Young Leaders and the Israel School for Young Ambassadors, and numerous Israeli and foreign diplomats, business leaders, and members of the diplomatic corps.
Diplomacy.co.il wishes congratulations on Europe Day 2018.
Photos Silvia G Golan