President Rivlin: Friendship is not measured between governments but between peoples. It is important for us to strengthen our relationship with your countries.”
Copyright: GPO/Mark Neiman
(Communicated by the Office of the President)
Upon taking up their appointments as ambassadors of their respective countries in Israel, new ambassadors from Georgia, Lithuania, Japan and Swaziland morning presented their credentials this morning (Thursday 11 September 2014) to President Reuven Rivlin in an official ceremony held at the Presidential Residence. During their policy meeting with the president, the ambassadors expressed their hope of strengthening relations and expanding cooperation between the two countries.
The new ambassador from Georgia, H.E. Mr. Paata Kalandadze, presented his credentials, thanked the President and said, "It is an honor for me to represent my country here in Israel. Good relations between Israel and Georgia will continue for the benefit of our nations and bring stability, peace and security not only to our regions but throughout the world."
President Rivlin shook his hand warmly and said: "I congratulate you on your return to Israel now, as ambassador to Georgia. Israel and Georgia have had good relations throughout their history. The good relations between our countries are measured not only by relationship between the governments but also by the strength of the connection and friendship between the peoples. The Jewish community of Georgia has a strong heritage relating to the Land of Israel, and in Israel we have a very extensive Georgian community."
The new ambassador of Lithuania, H.E. Mr. Edminas Bagdonas, presented his credentials to President Rivlin and stated, "I am greatly excited by this occasion in Jerusalem. I am committed to doing everything in a positive manner to ensure you preserve your memories of Lithuania. There are tragic memories in our common history, primarily the Holocaust, and our prime concern is the promotion of educational plans and the signing of agreements that will preserve the memory of the Holocaust for future generations. We are promoting high-tech, cyber and technology conferences that include Israelis, with the aim of strengthening the bilateral relationship." President Rivlin commended the good relations and said, "The history of our nations is hundreds of years old, the Jewish Lithuanian community is very broad. Your prime minister has taught us that it is best to study the past so as to understand the future. "
The new Japanese ambassador, H.E. Mr. Shigeo Matsutomi, thanked the president and said: "I thank you for your warm hospitality. I feel the amity in Israel towards the Japanese nation, which is sometimes measured by the many staff members I meet here in Israel who talk to me in Japanese. In Japan many believe that we and Israel have a lot in common, in that it is important for a nation to invest in its people, its companies and international cooperation. I would like to convey to you our Emperor’s request for bilateral cooperation with you, and I believe that we are on the right track." President Rivlin responded: "It is an honor for me, you are the ambassador of an important nation. We have a lot in common – we both have long histories and profound and ancient cultures. We appreciate your efforts and the efforts of your government to help in achieving peace in our region. Unfortunately, we are at a point where we are forced to fight terrorist organizations, and this requires a lot of effort, but we respect international law, and as a nation it is an honor to welcome you and hope that you will have a productive time in Israel. You have a lot to admire."
The Japanese ambassador added, "Our emperor asked me to assess the situation in the region and I am confident that we will find ways to collaborate and strengthen the stability and prosperity here. I will do all I can in order to be successful during my service in Israel."
The ambassador of Swaziland, H.E. Mr. Promise Msibi, presented his credentials to the president and said: "I would like to thank you for the opportunity to submit my credentials here in Israel. The King of Swaziland would like to express his congratulations on your election as president, and we hope we will continue to be on good terms. In addition, the king wishes to express his condolences for the loss of life suffered by Israel as a result of Israel’s battle with the terrorist organizations. Israel has the right to defend itself at all costs and we hope that the world will be free of terrorism in the near future. My king and my countrymen remember Israel’s support of the government of Swaziland on various issues, and we hope that we will strengthen the bilateral relationship in the future." The president congratulated the ambassador on his appointment, and added": "I want to congratulate you on your Independence Day celebrations. We appreciate the people Swaziland, and while our past and present relationship is firm and good, we are keen on strengthening it further in the future. We will not forget the fact that you remained as ambassadors in Israel even in war.”
At the end of the ceremony, President Rivlin thanked the honor guard and musicians of the police orchestra that have accompanied the official ceremonies at the Presidential Residence for many years, and wished them a happy New Year.