June 20, 2018

  • Too big to fail? The global conversion of threat to opportunity

    HRH Princess Basmah bint Saud bin Abdulaziz Al Saud – Picture by Private Office of HRH Princess Basmah bint Saud   By HRH Princess Basmah bint Saud bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Founder and CEO of GURA (Global United Centre for Research and Analysis). For some time now, we have been finding new ways to push ourselves closer to the brink, somehow reassured mistakenly by the belief that we – which is to say our system of nation states – are too big to fail. But we are livingin a disquieting time when failureis much more likely than we think –…

  • New NATO Headquarters

    By the Honorable Rose Gottemoeller, Deputy Secretary General of NATO. For 50 years, NATO has called Brussels home. During that time, NATO helped bring the Cold War to a peaceful end, we put a stop to wars in the Balkans and worked to ensure Afghanistan never again becomes a safe haven for international terrorists. Our Brussels headquarters is also where, after the terrorist attacks against the United States on 9/11, the Alliance took the historic decision to enact Article 5 of our founding Washington Treaty, which states that an attack on one is an attack on us all. Proud as we are…

  • A 60th anniversary for the Benelux Union

    By Alain de Muyser, Deputy Secretary General of the Benelux Union. Launched in 1944 as a Customs Union, the Benelux cooperation was formally institutionalized in 1958 by a treaty setting up a “Benelux Economic Union”. In 2008, the treaty was expanded to sustainable development and security matters, thus becoming a “Benelux Union”. As the initiator of the European common market, the three Benelux countries have played a significant role in the shaping of the European integration. Constantly adapting to new realities, the Benelux cooperationevolved from a thematic collaboration to encompass topics related to the welfare and security of its citizens,…

  • Ecuador Committed to the Defense of Human Rights

                                By H.E. Fernando Bucheli, Consul General of the Republic of Ecuador. The Human Rights Council of the United Nations at its 26th session in July 2014 in Geneve, decided to establish an open-ended intergovernmental working group on transnational corporations and other business enterprises with respect to human rights, whose mandate shall be to elaborate an international legally binding instrument to regulate, in international human rights law, the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises. Ecuador leads the working group since its first session and has…

  • Takeaway lessons from the Executive Council’s Chairmanship in the OPCW

    H.E. Sheikh Mohammed Belal, Ambassador of  Bangladesh to the Netherlands. By Roy Lie Atjam. His Excellency Ambassador Sheikh Mohammed Belal is the Bangladeshi Ambassador to the Netherlands, as well as Bangladesh’s Permanent Representative to the OPCW. From May 12th, 2017 to May 11th, 2018, H.E. Ambassador Belal has fulfilled the role of Chairperson of the Executive Council of the OPCW. On May 29th, the Ambassador agreed to share some of his insights with Diplomat Magazine Your Excellency, thank you very much for accepting this interview. As your mandate as Chairperson of the OPCW Executive Council recently came to its end,…

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Diplomatic News

Colombia joins NATO and OSCE 

Jun 19, 2018

Juan Manuel Santos Calderón and Donal Tusk – Picture by European Union Thursday, 31 May 2018, Brussels: Colombia has joined NATO as a “global partner” after President Juan Manuel Santos finalized the agreement. It entails that Colombia will not necessarily have to partake in military action -should an ally be under siege- yet it shall be fully accredited in headquarters. The 29-state NATO alliance reached a partnership agreement with Colombia back in May 2017, just after peace was signed with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, an agreement that earned Santos a Nobel Peace Prize. Other global partners include Afghanistan, Australia, Iraq, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mongolia, New Zealand and Pakistan. Colombia’s partnership…

Faki Moussa Mahamat in Brussels 

Jun 19, 2018

Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairman of the African Union Commission and Federica Mogherini – Picture by European Commission. Wednesday, 23 May 2018, members of the European Commission and the African Union Commission met at Brussels for the 9th Commission-to-Commission Meeting, co-chaired by President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker and the African Union Commission Chairperson, Moussa Faki Mahamat. The two Commissions discussed how to reinforce their cooperation in order to tackle common global challenges. They also followed-up more concretely on the Abidjan Summit, based on agreed priorities such as peace and security, governance, investment, sustainable development, migration and education. Chairman Moussa Faki Mahamat also took the…

2018 North Korea-United States of America Summit

Jun 18, 2018

Kim Jon-un and Donald Trump – Picture by U.S. Department of State. Joint statement of President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America and Chairman Kim Jong Un of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea at the Singapore Summit. President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America and Chairman Kim Jong Un of the State Affairs Commission of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) held a first, historic summit in Singapore on June 12, 2018. President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un conducted a comprehensive, in-depth, and sincere exchange of opinions on the issues related…

Dutch State Visit to Latvia

Jun 18, 2018

King Willem-Alexander and President Raimonds Vējonis – Picture by Presidency of Latvia. 11-12 June 2018, Riga, Republic of Latvia: At the invitation of President Raimonds Vējonis, His Majesty King Willem-Alexander paid a state visit to the Republic of Latvia. The monarch was accompanied by Foreign Minister Stef Blok. The state visit to Latvia was followed by a state visit to the Republic of Estonia (12 and 13 June) and to the Republic of Lithuania (13 and 15 June). The programme was focused on the long-standing historical ties between The Netherlands and Latvia, to Estonia and to Lithuania, which date back to the fourteenth century – with…

Dutch State Visit to Lithuania 

Jun 18, 2018

President Dalia Grybauskaitė and King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands – Picture by Lithuanian Presidency. 13-15 June 2018, Vilnius, Republic of Lithuania: At the invitation of the President of Lithuania,  H.E. Ms.  Dalia Grybauskaitė, His Majesty King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands paid a state visit to the Republic of Lithuania on the evening of Wednesday 13 and on Friday 15 June 2018 accompanied by H.E. Foreign Minister Stef Blok. Parallel to the state visit, a separate economic programmes explored the potential for expanding economic partnership. In Lithuania the focus was on partnerships in energy, with Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Sigrid Kaag attending the parallel economic programme. Another theme was military…

Denmark Celebrated Constitution Day 2018

Jun 18, 2018

H.E. Mr. Jens-Otto Horslund, Ambassador for the Kingdom of Denmark and Mrs. Lisbet Horslund. By Roy Lie A Tjam. On June 5, 2018, Denmark celebrated constitution day. It’s the anniversary of the signing of the Danish constitution of 1849, which established Denmark as a constitutional monarchy. H.E. Mr. Jens-Otto Horslund, Ambassador for the Kingdom of Denmark including Greenland and the Faroe Islands. For additional Hester Dijkstra’s pictures, please open the following link: https://www.flickr.com/photos/121611753@N07/albums/72157698048149525 The 2018 edition of this momentous day took place on the lawns of the residence of Ambassador Jens-Otto Horslund and his spouse Mrs. Lisbet Horslund. It is…

Centenary of Nelson Mandela

Jun 16, 2018

H.E. Mr. Bruce Koloane, Ambassador of South Africa. By Roy Lie Atjam. Leiden, June first, 2018, The Embassy of South Africa, the Africa Studies Centre Leiden and the VrijeUniversiteit Amsterdam cohosted a lecture at the Academigebouw Leiden University. The occasion was the centenary of the birth of Nelson Mandela. Master of Ceremonies was Prof. Jan-Bart Gewald, director Africa Study Centre Leiden. Prof. Mark Rutgers, Dean Faculty of Humanities, welcomed the guests on behalf of Rector Magnificus Prof. Carel Stolker. H.E. Mr. Bruce Koloane, Ambassador of South Africa to the Netherlands, gave an introduction to the centenary of Nelson Mandela. Prof…

Cyprus : inauguration exhibition “Where have you been”

Jun 12, 2018

Nicos Argyrides, Second Secretary Embassy of Cyprus, Cypriot artist Toula Liasi, Ambassador of Cyprus H.E. Mr. Elpidoforos Economou and Mr. Yiannis Toumazis, Director of the Nicosia Municipal Arts Centre.     By Roy Lie Atjam. The Hague the exhibition Where have you been? was inaugurated on June 2, 2018, by the Ambassador of Cyprus H.E. Mr. Elpidoforos Economou. The exhibition consists of works by the Cypriot artist Toula Liasi and is dedicated to all Missing Persons in Cyprus. Interesting to note, Toula Liasiget’s her inspiration from music. Therefor the Dutch trombonist Jorgen van Rijen performed I was like a wow…

60th anniversary of the Benelux Union

Jun 11, 2018

Tuesday, 5 June 2018, Brussels: Trilateral meeting at the Royal Palace at Brussels for the three Benelux heads of state treated to a luncheon by His Majesty the VII King of the Belgians. Thereafter the three royal heads of state headed to the Benelux Secretariat to unveil the latter’s new name, for thereafter head to BOZAR, the Palace of Beaux Arts, for a close encounter with youngsters from all three Benelux countries about the union’s meaning for them and prospects about the future. A formal ceremony and a reception were held wherein the Dutch and Belgian foreign ministers held allocutions alongside the Luxembourgish…

The 2018 National Day of Georgia

Jun 11, 2018

H.E. Mr. Konstantine Surguladze,Ambassador of Georgia in the Netherlands. By Roy Lie Atjam. Georgian National Ballet Sukhishvili, is one of the most acclaimed ensemble in the world. In the past (73) years the dance company has performed in over one hundred countries. The group is inimitable, astounding, elegant and so much more. It’s precisely therefore that H.E. Mr. Konstantine Surguladze Georgia’s Ambassador in the Netherlands has brought Sukhishvili to The Hague to perform at Georgia’s Independence Day- and 100 Years of Georgia’s First Democratic Republic celebration. For additional Marian van Noort’s pictures, please open the following link: https://www.flickr.com/photos/121611753@N07/albums/72157696173236291 During the performance,…

Diplomatic Pouch

Palestinian priorities

Meeting the Chief of Palestinian Mission, H.E. Ms. Rawan Sulaiman. Recently, during a lunch at the prestigious Hotel Des Indes* in The Hague, the Chief of the Palestinian Mission to the Netherlands gave us an overview of the bilateral relations with the Netherlands, the current situation in Palestine, and an update on her upcoming projects. The last year and a half in The Hague served as an important milestone in the career of H.E. Ms. Sulaiman, who began her function as Desk Officer for the Netherlands in the early 80’s. The Netherlands have been very supportive towards Palestine in different…

Dr Azizi’s Vision for Afghanistan

“Peace and stability can only be achieved by an honest cooperation and commitments on the regional as well as on the international level.”  An interview with the Ambassador of Afghanistan, H.E. Dr. Homayoon Aziz.   By Sheila Turabaz. His Excellency Dr. Mohammad Homayoon Azizi is the new Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to the Netherlands, succeeding H.E.  Dr. Obaidullah Obaid. H.E. Dr. Azizi started his career as a medical doctor in 2005. He also entered into local politics that same year as a member of the Herat Provincial Council in western Afghanistan and later as chairman. In 2010…

Tatiana Delvalle: promoting and sharing Panama’s culture in the world

Tatiana Delvalle always brings Panama in her heart, wherever she goes. In this article, Ms. Delvalle talks with us about her life and duties as the spouse of H.E. Mr. Delvalle, Ambassador of Panama to the Netherlands. The Netherlands is your first destination abroad as a diplomat’s spouse. Does your experience here live up to your expectations? Life in The Hague has been wonderful, much better than anticipated. We feel very fortunate to be posted in a city that offers an incredible variety of Dutch and international experiences. We appreciate the Dutch’s open mind, joyful and straightforward character as well…

“Beyond Duty” – Stories of righteous diplomats

On the picture H.E. Aviv Shir-On, Ambassador of Israel  during his speech. By Guido Lanfranchi. The City Hall of The Hague hosted the exhibition “Beyond Duty,” in which the government of Israel paid tribute to the brave diplomats who helped Jewish families escaping the Nazi persecution.   Speakers were; H.E. Aviv Shir-On, Ambassador of Israel to the Netherlands, the Mayor of The Hague, Ms. Pauline Krikke and the Director for Multilateral Organisations and Human Rights Department, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Peter van der Vliet. When rules are unjust, is obedience a virtue? When innocent people are persecuted in…

Current developments on the Korean peninsula

                            Acting as MC Michel Kerres, from NRC newspaper, during Q&A session, at the table Remco Breuker and Peter Potman. By Guido Lanfranchi. On Tuesday May 22nd, amid the rapid and tumultuous events occurring on the Korean peninsula, a large audience gathered at the Societeit De Witte, in the very center of The Hague, to attend the seminar: “Current Developments on the Korean Peninsula.”  The event was organized thanks to a collaboration between the Embassy of the Republic of Korea to the Netherlands,  the Asia and Oceania…

Consequences of unilaterally denouncing of the nuclear deal with Iran by the USA

By Corneliu Pivariu. As he declared previously during the electoral campaign and at the beginning of his office, president Donald Trump announced and signed on May, 8th 2018, the United States’ unilateral withdrawal from what is known to the public at large as the nuclear agreement with Iran (The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action – JCPOA –signed in the 5+1 format with Iran by the USA, Great Britain, France, China, Russia and Germany after long negotiations, in July 2015). For those who did not remember, Germany’s inclusion into this agreement was the result of the fact it supplied Iran, decades…

Has the West Lost It?

By Barend ter Haar. The subtitle “A Provocation” of Has the West Lost It? will not surprise someone who has read other books of the Singaporean diplomat-scholar Kishore Mahbubani, such as Can Asians Think? (2001) and The Great Convergence: Asia, the West, and the Logic of One World (2013). Just as in those earlier books, he is friendly, but provokingly clear, not only about the accomplishments of the West and the Rest, but also about their flaws and blunders. According to Mahbubani the West refuses to accept that humanity has turned a crucial corner in its history. For a short…

Why is the Korean Reunification not to Work anytime soon

(Denuclearisation of the Far East long way Ahead) By Prof. Anis H. Bajrektarevic How to draw the line between the recent and still unsettled EU/EURO crisis and Asia’s success story? Well, it might be easier than it seems: Neither Europe nor Asia has any alternative. The difference is that Europe well knows there is no alternative – and therefore is multilateral. Asia thinks it has an alternative – and therefore is strikingly bilateral, while stubbornly residing enveloped in economic egoisms. No wonder that Europe is/will be able to manage its decline, while Asia is (still) unable to capitalize its successes….

International Kotinos award for Diplomat Magazine

                            Kotinos International Award in collaboration with the United Nations International Charitable Organization and the World Sand Foundation was given out for the first time in the Middle East, indeed in the Emirate of Dubai, UAE.    Kotinos International Award considered one of the most prestigious awards internationally and comes original from Greece.  It’s a rewarding program for excellence in the fields of businesses, and personalities that successful in their own fields. The award was held in Dubai in 2018. H.E. Dr. Rasha Feidi opened the award ceremony by a speech regarding the power of rewarding, followed by…

Les Roses de Bagatelle at Guerlain, Paris

Henri Estramant, Esther Kamatari, Laurent Boillot,  Michaelle Jean,  Rashid Al Khalifa, exposition “Les Roses de Bagatelle” Rashid al Khalifa. Guerlain. 05/2018 © david atlan. Artist Rashid Al Khalifa‘s recent series Les Roses de Bagatelle opened at Guerlain, 68 Champs-Élysées, FR-75008 PARIS on 5 May 2018. The exhibition remains open till 8 June 2018. Inspired by the history of the Château de Bagatelle and the allure of the gardens that surround it, Rashid Al Khalifa’s most recent series was created as an homage to Guerlain whose scent “Le Jardin de Bagatelle’ took inspiration from the same park when it was crafted in 1983….

The Jewish Monument the Hague

By John Dunkelgrün. Most everyone living here knows that Amsterdam has a long history of Jewish life that was cruelly disrupted and almost destroyed during the Second World War. It is less known that the Hague too had a substantial Jewish quarter that flourished in the very center of the city for almost 400 years. Quite a few of the Jewish “Hagenaars” made considerable contributions to politics, law, journalism, banking and industry of the Netherlands. In 1940 the Hague had the largest Jewish community after Amsterdam, more than 16,000 people. Many of them lived between the “Spui” where the Town…

20 May / World Bee Day

The Republic of Slovenia, on the initiative of the Slovenian Beekeepers’ Association, initiated procedures in the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)in 2015 to declare the World Bee Day. On 20 December 2017, the United Nations General Assembly in New York unanimously adopted a resolution proclaiming 20 May as the World Bee Day. The resolution was adopted with co-sponsorship of 115 countries from all regions of the world. The World Bee Day will be observed for the first time on 20 May 2018 and on this occasion, International Ministerial Conference will be held in Slovenia with participation…