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On Thursday, October 10th, Spain's Ambassador and Mrs. Fernando Carderera, along with the Spanish Embassy Missions, celebrated Spain's National - "Columbus Day".


The reception was held in the beautiful garden of the Ambassador's residence in Herzliya. Hundreds of distinguished guests came to congratulate the Ambassador and his wife, embassy staff and the Spanish people on this special day.


The honored guests included Gideon Saar, Minister of the Interior, (previously Education Minister), ambassadors, members of the diplomatic missions in Israel, members of the foreign ministry, business leaders and friends of the Embassy.


His Excellency, the Ambassador, surprised guests when he began his speech with a fluent Hebrew blessing, and then continued speaking in English. He said that since Spain is a key nation in Jewish history, the relationship between the two states is founded on many common interests and shared values. The relations between Israel and Spain are both complex and intense because their histories are also complex and intense. He noted that Spain and Israel have so much in common and therefore sees particular importance in developing relations in the fields of culture, education, science, new technology, research, trade and investment.


He also noted that there is growing presence of Spanish companies in Israel. Valoriza, is about to complete construction of a desalination plant in Ashdod; Abengoa is building solar plants; Telefónica has a subsidiary in Israel; and several Spanish companies want to take part in the construction of Israel's plan to improve its infrastructure.


Ambassador Carderera said that the economic situation in Spain has significantly improved in the last twelve months. Important reforms are already in place, public deficit has been reduced, productivity has improved, exports have increased and the Spanish current account balance has a surplus for the first time since 1997. He added that Spanish corporations are world leaders in key sectors such as renewable energy, infrastructure management, high-speed railways, biotechnology, naval technology, environmental technology, air and space systems, among others. He added, in Hebrew that Spain would like to use all this potential to do business and cooperate with Israel in all possible sectors.

Furthermore, he said that his country has invested a lot in international efforts to attaining peace in the Middle East, and that Spain fully supports Israel's right for security. Spain is committed to a two State solution through direct negotiations, including the creation of a viable Palestinian State that will recognize Israel


Ambassador Fernando Carderera raised a glass to toast to the long life and wellbeing of the Heads of the State of Israel, President Shimon Peres and to His Majesty King Juan Carlos of Spain, as well as to our mutual friendship. Minister Sa'ar raised a glass in a toast to Spain and expressed his best wishes for prosperity and continuing friendship between the two nations.

Minister of the Interior Gideon Sa'ar congratulated His Majesty Juan Carlos the First, the government and people of Spain on the occasion of Spain's National Day, on behalf of the Government of Israel and the people of Israel. He said that bilateral relations between Israel and Spain are continuing to deepen and flourish. Friendly and productive ties are seen across many spheres – such as the political, economic, commercial, research, science, technology and cultural. In April of this year Spain's Foreign Minister visited Israel along with important economic delegations. Israel's embassy in Spain celebrated the 65th Anniversary of Israel's Independence under the heading of cooperation for innovation and growth. These events were followed with great interest in Spain.


Minister Sa'ar mentioned the joint history of Spain and the Jewish people and pointed out that the two countries share a common struggle in the uncompromising fight against terrorism and in so, acknowledged Spain for the participation of its forces in UNIFIL in southern Lebanon. He also noted that Spain's culture holds a place of honor among the people of Israel. Many Israelis have a great interest in the Spanish cultural scene and, of course, in Spain's famous football teams. The Minister stressed the importance of strengthening ties between the young generations of both countries.

The food, as we learned, was prepared courtesy of the ambassador's wife Victoria Carderera with most foods prepared by her personally. Among the special foods prepared for the occasion were the Spanish delicacies such as: tapas, including excellent meats and cheese brought specially from Spain for the occasion, croquetas, tortillas and a kosher corner. All food was accompanied by the best Spanish cava and wine.


During the event, a video was screened showing Spain's key companies and innovative technologies as well as the country's beauty, which attracts hordes of tourists each year.

When singing the anthems of Spain and Israel, the Ambassador again surprised guests by joining in the singing of the Israeli anthem in Hebrew, delighting all Israelis who were present.

In the artistic part of the event, Silvia Duran and her flamenco school performed traditional Spanish flamenco dancing.

The beautiful layout of the venue, wonderful stage lighting and tasteful decorations contributed to a cozy atmosphere and very nice and pleasant evening.


Photo Silvia Golan






Photo Silvia Golan


H.E. MR. PATRICK MAISONNAVE  Embassador of france

President Peres Received on Thursday, October 10, 2013 Letters of Credence from the New Ambassadors of Ireland, France, Paraguay, Brazil and Mongolia.

President Peres to the new French Ambassador:

"In important and critical moments, France stood to the side of Israel. The State of Israel expects the important visit of President Hollande soon".

The French Ambassador to President Peres:

"France will also stand to the side of Israel in the future, and as Ambassador I intend to fulfill any task as necessary ".


Paraguay Ambassador presented the Letter of Credence to President Peres with the renewed opening of the Embassy in Israel after 12 years".


The new Ambassadors of Ireland, France, Paraguay, Brazil and Mongolia presented their Letters of Credence to President Peres, with their admission as Ambassadors of their respective countries. The five new Ambassadors thanked President Peres for the prerogative to serve in Israel and contribute to strengthen the mutual relations, and expressed their hope for further development of these relations.

A closing loop took place in the meeting of President Peres with the new French Ambassador, who started by saying: "France will stand to the side of Israel in the future as in the past, and as Ambassador I intend to fulfill any task as necessary".

President Peres responded that: "The State of Israel appreciates the special relations with France, which stood to our side in important and critical moments, and that the two countries have a common desire to march ahead with strengthened relations. I am sure that you will soon feel the warmth and closeness between the two nations. We expect the important visit of President Hollande in the next month, and wish you a great success in fulfilling your duties.

When starting the meeting with the new Paraguay Ambassador, President Peres greeted the renewed opening of the Embassy in Israel after 12 years, and said: "You represent the renewal of the relations between Israel and Paraguay. I am sure that all the doors will be opened for you, that you will be granted fruitful cooperation". The Paraguayan Ambassador thanked President Peres and said: "We consider the renewed opening of the Embassy in Israel of great importance, and we will do our best to strengthen the relations between the countries in a variety of fields.

President Peres wished great success to the new Ambassadors and said: "I am sure that you will find in Israel a warm home for strengthening the political, economical and cultural relations between the countries.

H.E  MR. EAMONN McKEE  Embassador of Ireland

 H.E. MR. MAX HABER NEUMANN Embassador of Paraguay



 H.E. MR. ALTANGEREL  BULGAA embassador of Mongolia

photos Mark Neuman / GPO




The Embassy of Uzbekistan in Israel held a reception on the occasion of its 22nd Independence Day on Thursday, September 12, 2013 at the Hilton Hotel in Tel Aviv along with hundreds of guests.  

The event was attended by senior members of the Israeli government, foreign ambassadors and members of the diplomatic core, leading businessmen and other distinguished guests.


Among the many guests were members of the Israeli Government, Uri Ariel, Minister of Housing and Construction, MK Faina Kirschenbaum, Deputy Minister of Interior Affairs and member of the Israel Beiteinu Party, and MK Avigdor Lieberman, a former MK, Israel Minister of Foreign Affairs and Deputy Prime Minister of Israel and the founder and leader of the Israel Beiteinu party.   

Ambassador of Uzbekistan, Oybek I. Eshonov, his wife, and embassy diplomatic staff warmly received and welcomed guests with personal handshakes.


AmbassadorEshonov noted that precisely twenty-two years ago Uzbekistan earned its independence and began a new stage in its historical development. Within this short period, the country underwent a complicated but fruitful journey. Today, he continues, the Uzbek nation is deservedly proud of its progress in all spheres. Great changes have occurred from individual families to large-scale transformations, such as modernization of its cities, villages and the country in general. The country's economy and society grew at a stable, steady pace with an increasing standard of living. The economy has shown a steady growth of over eight percent in the last six years. He also noted that the State of Israel was one of the first countries to acknowledge Uzbekistan's independence and begin diplomatic relations. Uzbekistan considers Israel an important partner in the Middle East. The government of Uzbekistan is interested in deepening the political dialogue between the two nations, and broadening the trade, economic and cultural links.

Uri Ariel, Israel's Housing and Construction minister welcomed the Ambassador and the Uzbek nation on behalf of the Israeli government. He noted that Israel and Uzbekistan are similar in many ways and face similar challenges. Both have had to contend with arid climates and have successfully moved from a mostly agricultural economy to a more industrial one. Both nations share a similar regional strategic view. Indeed, both are countries that live in what can be described as "tough neighborhoods" and both face the threats of terrorism and Islamist radicalism. He noted that in recent years, there has been much progress in the relations between the countries. We have seen visits by cabinet ministers, diplomatic dialogue, and also the visiting of an Israeli parliamentary delegation to Uzbekistan. Ariel mentioned that a year ago we commemorated the 20th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Israel and Uzbekistan. Indeed, Israel was among the first countries to recognize the Republic of Uzbekistan following the declaration of its independence and that we hope to continue to strengthen and further our ties.


Mr. Shlomo Morgan, the Israeli Foreign Ministry representative further noted that in Israel, there are more than 200,000 Jews originally from Uzbekistan. They are an integral part of Israeli society and many of them hold prominent positions in our economy and political system. We are impressed with their success in maintaining the Bukhari Uzbeki culture and tradition. They are also an important bridge between both nations. He added that we will never forget that during the horrors of the Holocaust during WWII, Uzbekistan gave refuge to many Jews and the Uzbeki people opened their hearts to us.


Outgoing ambassador of Israel in Uzbekistan, Hillel Newman also congratulated the Uzbeki nation. Newman stated that during his service in Uzbekistan he was always received warmly. He said that although Uzbekistan is predominantly an Islamic state, it represents moderate Islam and is a country with strong democratic values. Relations with the Uzbeki administration were very good with a high level of cooperation during his tenure as ambassador.

Guests were surprised to discover that among them was the well-known Israeli singer and actress Galit Giat, who recently returned with her troupe from a folk festival in Uzbekistan celebrating Eastern melodies. Galit praised the wonderful hospitality and cordial reception accorded to the members of her band. It seems that the love was mutual as the Israeli band won the "Crowd Favorite" title.


Ambassador of Uzbekistan Mr. Aoibk Ashonov, Mr. Uri Ariel Housing and Construction Minister and Mr. Solomon Morgan Israeli Foreign Ministry representative

Hillel Newnam Former Israeli Ambassador to Uzbekistan and Mr. Yaakov Moshihov President of the World Congress of Bukharan Jews

 Photographer: Eli Blilus




“Chile Forest, which lies within the Jerusalem Forest, symbolizes the cooperation between the two countries and our two nations.”
The annual ceremony in memory of General Bernardo O’Higgins, liberator of Chile, was held in Chile Forest in Israel’s Jerusalem Corridor. The event was attended by the Chilean Ambassador to Israel, members of a Chilean delegation on a visit to the country and representatives of KKL-JNF. “Thanks to General O’Higgins, today Chile is celebrating 203 years of independence,” said Chilean Ambassador Jorge Montero. “He was a shining example of patriotism and leadership in his lifetime, and he remains so today.”

Ceremony participants at the General O'Higgins Memorial. Photo: Yoav Devir

General Bernardo O’Higgins liberated Chile from the yoke of Spanish rule, served as his country’s leader after independence and is today considered a national hero and one of the founding fathers of the Chilean state. A ceremony in his memory is held annually in the heart of Eshtaol Forest at the events plaza that bears O’Higgins’ name. KKL-JNF established this plaza twenty-five years ago with the help of donations from its Friends in Chile and former Chileans living in Israel. 

This traditional ceremony takes place every year – but this year, for the first time, it was attended by an official delegation from Chile whose members included Marcello Elissalde, a representative of the O’Higgins Institute in Santiago, which promotes the general’s memory and heritage.

Marcello Elissalde by donor recognition plaques in Chile Forest. Photo: Yoav Devir

The General O'Higgins Memorial. Yoav Devir

Marcello Elissalde reminded his listeners that O’Higgins’ memory is perpetuated at 170 sites throughout the world, and emphasized the special importance of KKL-JNF’s cooperation with regard to memorializing this Chilean leader in Israel. “Here in the Holy Land a most beautiful and unique memorial has been established,” he said. 

Moment of silence. Photo: Yoav Devir

Touvia Goldstein, President of both the Israel-Chile Cultural Institute and the O'Higgins Institute in Israel, spoke of the good relations that prevail between the two countries: “Chile Forest, which lies within the Jerusalem Forest, symbolizes the cooperation between the two countries and our two nations,” he said. 

Fulvio Queinolo, the Chilean military attaché in Israel, gave examples of General O’Higgins’ activities on behalf of liberty and social issues, and added that the State of Israel also represents these values. “Thanks to the cooperation with KKL-JNF we can invite you to follow in the footsteps of this unique leader who honored both society and his fellow human beings,” he concluded. 

Chile Forest is not used only for events and ceremonies – it is also a popular venue for walks and other recreational activities. The forest was developed thanks to contributions from Friends of KKL-JNF in Chile, and it attracts large numbers of visitors. Its facilities include a recreation area dedicated to the memory of Noy and Rosa Furman of Santiago, which offers picnic spots and playground equipment for children; a decorative stone plaza named after National Senator Angel Faivovich; and attractive and convenient stone paths that link the various sites to one another. The forest trail, which is accessible to visitors exploring in cars, on bicycles or on foot, bears the name of social pioneer Leon Kaplun, who initiated the establishment of the O’Higgins Plaza. All these amenities are overlooked by the impressive stone monument dedicated to the memory of General O’Higgins, whose image now gazes down from the hilltop, as befits a military leader inspecting the terrain below. The general was famous for his special relationship with Israel and Jews, and we may assume that he would be impressed with the view he has been accorded. The participants in the ceremony laid a memorial wreath at the foot of the monument and stood for a moment in silence in his memory.

KKL-JNF was represented at the ceremony by Board Member Hernan Felman, who told those assembled about his visit to Chile several months ago, when he had the opportunity to observe how the country has developed and progressed. “KKL-JNF is glad of the opportunity it has been given to share some of its knowledge and experience by cooperating with Chile in matters relating to agriculture and afforestation,” he said. He went on to describe to his listeners the far-reaching changes that KKL-JNF has brought about in Israel in the areas of forestry,community development, agriculture, waterand ecology. 

At the conclusion of the ceremony, the guests went on to visit KKL-JNF’s offices in Jerusalem, where they listened to explanations of the organization’s activities and visited the hall where the KKL-JNF Books of Honor are kept. The covers of these large volumes were designed by a variety of artists, and the pages within them record the names of donors, well-known figures and other people from all walks of Jewish life. The donations record in the Books of Honor allows donors to participate in Israel’s progress and development and accords them the special honor of immortalizing their acts of generosity.

Donor recognition site in Chile Forest.  Photo: Yoav Devir

Photos  Silvia G. Golan 


On Monday of this week (26.08.13), the Ukrainian Embassy held a reception in honor of its National day, celebrating 22 years of independence.

Ambassador Hennadii Nadolenko and Mrs. Nadolenko, received each guest personally with a warm handshake.

Among the distinguished guests were Israel's Minister of Immigration Absorption, Sofa Landver, Deputy Foreign Minister MK Zeev Elkin, members of the diplomatic staff of the foreign embassies in Israel and Israeli executives.

Boys and girls dressed in national costumes with flowers on their heads, received the guests in two rows, through which guests were led into the reception hall where they

were honored with the best of traditional Ukrainian beverages and delicacies.


Ambassador Hennadii Nadolenko opened the evening by welcoming all those present and praising the wonderful relationship developed between the two countries during the two decades since the establishment of the Ukrainian Embassy in Israel. The Ambassador noted that the Ukraine sees Israel as an important and genuine partner in the Middle East. He praised the bilateral cooperation between the countries in the cultural and economic sectors, and hopes to further develop and grow these areas of cooperation in the future.


Minister of Immigration Absorption, Sofa Landver, congratulated the Ukrainian government and its people on the occasion of its 22 years of independence. She noted that Israel and the Ukraine share a historical common heritage with half a million immigrants from the Ukraine living in Israel today. These individuals significantly contribute to Israel's economy, society and culture, and provide a human bridge between the two countries.

She noted that this year marks the twenty first anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Israel and the Ukraine. The two countries bilateral interests are broad and diverse, but also close and friendly. They include ties in the economic, commercial and cultural sectors, as well as in tourism and are supported by a long series of high ranking official visits on both sides. She also mentioned that the Visa Exemption Agreement, which was signed by the two countries in 2011 reflecting the trust and friendship between the two countries, led to a dramatic rise in the number of tourists and pilgrims visiting Israel. This is an impressive figure that hopefully will continue to rise.

The Minister wished the Ambassador: "Please give our very best wishes to the government and people of the Ukraine. We hope to continue our countries relationship and successful cooperation".




Shlomo Morgan, Minister of the Protocol Department, representing the Foreign Ministry of Israel, welcomed the Ambassador and the Ukrainian people. He noted that the cultural ties between the two countries are strong and close, finding their expression in the exchange of artists, exhibitions and many other activities. The Ukrainian Embassy operates a Ukrainian cultural center in the city of Bat Yam. Similarly, the Israeli Embassy in Kiev is very active in bringing to Ukraine the different facets of Israeli culture.

Israel also welcomes the cooperation between the two countries in the commercial and economic fields. He hopes that both sides will intensity their efforts to further expand this cooperation to tap the full potential in these important areas. He congratulated the government and the Ukrainian people, hoping that the friendship and cooperation between the countries will expand and flourish in the years to come.


During the event, Ukrainian and Israeli singers sang the anthems of the two countries. Guests who came to rejoice and celebrate with the Ukrainian people on this special day enthusiastically joined in the singing.


Among the guests who attended the event was Deputy Interior Minister and Secretary General of "Israel Beiteinu", Faina Kirshenbaum. Ms. Kirshenbaum recently visited the city of Uman in the Ukraine to closely monitor the preparations for the arrival of tens of thousands of Israeli Hassidim for Rosh Hashanah prayers at the holy grave of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov during this period.

Photos by Silvia Golan