Nepal and Israel Celebrate 52 Years of Cooperation
Nepal and Israel issued joint commemorative stamps to mark years of friendly relations between the two countries last week. The stamps showcase the highest and lowest peaks in the world which are found in both countries: Israel’s Dead Sea which is 422 meters below sea level and Nepal’s Mount Everest, at 8,848 meters above sea level.
A stamp signing ceremony was held in Nepal’s capital, Kathmandu with officials from the Nepal government, the Postal Services Department and the Embassy of Israel as well as the Israeli Ambassador to Nepal, Hanan Goder. Simultaneously, the stamp was also issued in Israel at the same time in a festive ceremony held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Present were the Nepalese Ambassador to Israel, Prahlad Kumar Prasai and Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon, who stated that Israel has “a deep appreciation” for Nepal and its people. “We are happy that our cooperation with Nepal will grow only stronger in the future,” Ayalon declared.
Although not new to Israel, it was the first time that Nepal issued a joint stamp with another country. The stamp depicts both the Nepalese and Israeli flags and includes writing in English, Hebrew, Nepalese and Arabic.
According to an article on NepalNews.com, a leading English-language news site from Nepal, “Israel and Nepal have enjoyed 52 glorious years of diplomatic ties between the two countries since diplomatic relations were established in the 1960s. Since then, both countries have seen the friendship grow and foster.” Nepal was the first of the Asian countries to establish diplomatic ties with Israel.
The Israeli embassy in Nepal lists a number of programs that Israel has been conducting in the fields of health, culture, education, technology and agriculture in Nepal.
Most recently, Israeli medical students donated their medical books from Soroka University School at Ben Gurion University in the Negev to students at Nepal’s Patan Academy for Health Science through the Israeli embassy in Nepal.
In addition, Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation (Mashav) and the Agricultural Development Bank Ltd. (ADBL) conducted a 10-day session in Kathmandu on agricultural training programs, dairy production, and livestock management for Nepalese farmers in early September.
Every year, approximately 20,000 Israeli backpackers hike in Nepal and the Annapurna mountain range, many of them having finished their army service. There are three Chabad Houses in Nepal, which hosts thousands of Israeli guests during Jewish holidays.