Tel Aviv Shines Blue and Yellow as the European Union Delegation and Members Mark Europe Day with a Show of Support for Ukraine
EuroParty 2022 was held on Thursday evening, May 12, in Tel Aviv’s Ganei Yehoshua park. This year’s celebration of Europe Day was dedicated to showing support for Ukraine, with a concert featuring Ukrainian and Israeli musicians, and a fundraiser for victims of the war.
The evening opened with refreshments served in the open-air space of the Wohl Auditorium. Tables were set up to display handmade Ukrainian crafts for sale, with proceeds going to the charities supporting Ukrainian victims.
Ambassador of the European Union to Israel, Mr. Dimiter Tzantchev, opened with greetings in Hebrew, noting that in his third posting in Israel, he is witness to the growth in the Israeli-EU relationship across numerous dimensions.
The ambassador touched on many of those areas of cooperation, from health (12 million doses of Covid 19 vaccines imported from the EU to Israel) to trade (EU-Israel trade rose from 31 billion euros to 37 billion euros in 2021, accounting for 30% of Israel’s international trade), to research and innovation (Israel is an active member of the Horizon Europe program).
Ambassador Tzantchev emphasized the EU’s commitment to peace in the region, and to Israel’s safety. He stated the EU’s clear condemnation of the recent wave of attacks in Israel, stating his remarks in English and Hebrew.
The theme of the night of course was European unity, peace and prosperity, represented by the May 9, 1950 Schuman declaration. The ambassador discussed the EU and member states’ unprecedented support for Ukraine, and stressed appreciation for Israel “standing with Europe and the US on the right side of history”, and to Minister of Health Nitzan Horowitz for being the first Israeli cabinet minister to visit Ukraine.
Minister Horowitz spoke on behalf of the Israeli government. Complimenting the ambassador’s impressive display of Hebrew, the minister noted that the Schuman declaration “serves as a symbol of the power, vision and determination of the human spirit.” He reiterated the values shared by Israel and the EU: “peace, democracy, rule of law, and sanctity of human life.”
Minister Horowitz expressed his appreciation for the EU’s Comprehensive Strategy on Combatting Antisemitism. He also noted the European Union’s efforts to advance peace, tolerance and democracy in the region and thanked the EU for providing financial support for the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian national economy.
Following the speeches, the national anthems of the European Union and Israel were played, and a toast was then raised. After enjoying dessert, guests were invited to the amphitheater for a concert featuring Ukrainian singer Viktoria Leléka and her European Jazz Quartet, and Israeli pop star Ivri Lider. Viktoria Leléka introduced her songs with stirring words of the need to bring peace for all people, as well as with the environment.
The distinguished guests at the celebration included H.E. Mr. Gil Haskel, Chief of State Protocol at the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Assaf Moran, Director of the Department for Multilateral European Organizations and NATO at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Professor Tamar Safra from Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center (Ichilov hospital); Dan Catarivas, Director of the division of Foreign Trade and International Relations at the Manufacturers’ Association of Israel; Boaz Moldawsky, President of The Israel Diamond Exchange; Gidon Bromberg Director of EcoPeace Middle East Israel, as well as ambassadors, military attaches, and Israeli business and civil society leaders.
Diplomacy.co.il congratulates the EU mission and all EU members on Europe Day and offers best wishes for peace and prosperity.
Photos credit Silvia G. Golan
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