The Embassy of Israel in collaboration with the Centre for Diplomatic Dialogue conducted a seminar on "Six Decades of Nepal-Israel Relations" today. This year marks the 60th year of establishment of diplomatic relations, the foundation stone in the history of the two countries.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Pradeep Kumar Gyawali was the chief guest at the event. The speakers highlighted Nepal-Israel bilateral ties, multilateral relations and existing cooperation and the possibilities of future collaboration between the two countries.

Addressing the ceremony, Minister Gyawali said, "I recall with pleasure that Nepal was the first country in the South Asian region to formally recognise the State of Israel by establishing diplomatic relations and hosting the Israeli Embassy in Kathmandu. Our relations have continued to flourish over the years. We have continued to cooperate and collaborate in various areas of mutual interest at the bilateral as well as multilateral levels. I express my confidence that Nepal-Israel relations will continue to strengthen and expand in the days ahead."

During the ceremony, Hanan Goder, Ambassador of Israel to Nepal said, "Relations between the countries stand on two legs: one is this excellent bilateral leg and the second one is the multilateral leg, which is less famous, less known and has much lower visibility. The multilateral relations take place mainly in the UN building in New York and in the Human Rights Council in Geneva, and sometimes in other locations.

It's imperative that both bilateral and multilateral ties are reflected in the voting pattern of Nepal at the UN as well as other global forums."

Tal Shvartsman, deputy chief of mission at the embassy presented the strong cooperation between the countries since 1960s till date in the major sectors such as agriculture, education, and health, among others.

As per the embassy, the seminar provided an opportunity to commend the existing bilateral ties and invited reflections on the possibilities of improving multilateral relations between the two nations. This is one of the major events being organised during the year to celebrate 60 years' of the establishment of diplomatic relations.

A version of this article appears in the print on March 19, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.