24 May 2017 - 28 Iyyar 5777 - כ"ח אייר ה' אלפים תשע"ז
Vietnam and Israel pledge closer defence ties Print E-mail

Senior defence officials from Vietnam and Israel have pledged to expand defence ties.

A statement by Israel’s Ministry of Defense (MoD) in Hanoi on 11 January said that following talks between the two countries, they would look to increase activities in defence research, development and production as well as technology transfers. Expanded defence ties will also facilitate training and education programmes and exchanges, it said.

The MoD said the talks were led by General Pham Ngoc Minh, deputy chief of staff of the Vietnam People’s Army, and Mishel Ben-Baruch, director of the Israeli Ministry of Defense’s International Defense Cooperation Division (SIBAT).

(Issue Feb 2017)

Israeli hikers rescue injured Japanese backpacker in Nepal E-mail

A Japanese backpacker, Akihu Sujiyama, 40, was seriously injured in December when a rockslide fell on her while she was hiking the Annapurna Circuit. Her leg was broken and she began to lose blood rapidly.

Israeli hikers in the area heard her anguished screams and ran to help her. They immediately applied a tourniquet, and were able to use a satellite phone in their possession to call a rescue helicopter.

The Chabad emissary for the region, Rabbi Chezki Lifshitz, who had received word of the incident via a Chabad situation room located in Israel, arrived with the helicopter as well. The woman was evacuated to a hospital in Kathmandu, where she received life-saving blood transfusions and underwent surgery that saved her leg.

Later, the Japanese Consul General to Nepal went to the local Chabad house to thank the hikers who had rescued Sujiyama.
“We thank the Nation of Israel,” he said. He also told Rabbi Lifshitz that Sujiyama wanted to directly thank the Israelis who had saved her life, and wanted to say that she “loves the Jewish people.”

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Professor Adi Shamir attends Asiacrypt conference in Vietnam E-mail

Israeli scientist Professor Adi Shamir, who won the 2002 ACM Turing Award in recognition of his contributions to cryptography, attended the Asiacrypt 2016 conference in Hanoi, along with nearly 250 scientists from around the world.

Asiacrypt 2016, the 22nd Annual International Conference on the Theory and Applications of Cryptology and Information Security, was organised by the Vietnam Institute for Advanced Study in Mathematics (VIASM) and took place from 4 to 8 December.

Professor Shamir also gave a lecture at the National Economics University, Hanoi, about the 40-year history of cryptology.

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Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin, together with his wife Nechama Rivlin, made an official visit to India from 14 to 21 November. The President was also accompanied by a highlevel delegation of government officials, business leaders and academics from Israel.

Rivlin is the first Israeli president to travel to India since 1996. In October 2015, Pranab Mukherjee became the first Indian head of state to visit Israel.

India’s current Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected travel to Israel next year, as the first Indian prime minister to do so. India and Israel are gearing up to mark 2017 as the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the countries, which began on 29 January, 1991.

Accompanying the delegation, Yaffa Zilbershats, head of the Council for Higher Education’s budget committee, said: “The issue of international cooperation in higher education and the expansion of academic ties between Israel and the world – in particular with India – is one of the central aims of the multi-year plan for higher education in Israel.” He added: “The academic delegation accompanying the President on his visit to India includes 13 presidents and senior representatives of Israeli academic institutions, who are expected to sign 15 separate agreements between Israeli and Indian educational institutions.”

Heading the business delegation, Shraga Brosh, President of Manufacturers Association of Israel, noted that “India represents a great challenge for Israeli manufacturers and this delegation will afford the opportunity to strengthen cooperation and partnership with their Indian counterparts. I have no doubt that this will be a fruitful visit and forge long-lasting economic partnerships which will strengthen and help grow the bilateral trade between the countries.”

At the beginning of his official state visit, President Rivlin was warmly welcomed by Indian President Pranab Mukherjee at the Presidential Residence in New Delhi. “I am very honoured and pleased to be the guest of PresidentMukherjee. He visited us a year ago and we are very privileged and honoured to be today here in your great country, in India. Thank you so very much for welcoming me Mr President,” Rivlin said.

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Philippine President visits Manila Synagogue E-mail

A historic visit by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to the Beth Yaacov Synagogue in Makati City on 4 October carried the blessings of the New Year’s holiday, which symbolises soul searching, forgiveness and atonement.

President Duterte visited the synagogue to apologise personally to the Jewish world for statements he had made connecting the Jewish Holocaust and his war on drugs.

The President made it clear that he had not meant any disrespect to the Jewish people. Referring to his personal life, he commented that his wife Elizabeth Zimmerman is actually a daughter of a Jewish father who found the Philippines as a shelter and home.

President Duterte expressed his respect and affinity to the Jewish people and Israel, paying homage to Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu and his desire to strengthen ties with Israel.

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