January 17, 2018

  • Connecting Past and Now, Japan and the Netherlands

    By H.E. Hiroshi Inomata, Ambassador of Japan to the Kingdom of the Netherlands. When I assumed my post as Ambassador of Japan in the Netherlands about two years ago, I was of course familiar with the shared history of our countries which has been over 400 years relationship, but living here has truly made me realise how deeply entwined the connection between Japan and the Netherlands is. In February 2017, I had a chance to visit the place that was the key to the beginnings of this relationship: Dejima, a once fan-shaped artificial island, which as a served trading post…

  • Dankuwel en Tot Ziens Nederland!

    By Abir Ali – Chargé d’Affaires a.i., Embassy of Lebanon in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. (February 2013 – January 2018). As I prepare to leave the Netherlands, I reflect on the five years I spent in this beautiful country with joy and satisfaction. Working in The Hague has been a gratifying experience for me, at times challenging yet always enjoyable. Lebanon and the Netherlands enjoy excellent relations. During my stay in Holland, our relations witnessed a remarkable boost. For the past years, Lebanon has been facing an unprecedented challenge represented by the Syrian refugee crisis. The impact on our…

  • The Ambassadors Lunch

    On the picture the Ambassadors of Bosnia – H.E. Mirsada Colakovic, Canada – H.E. Sabine Nölke, Tanzania – H.E. Ms. Irene Florence M. Kasyanju, Ambassador Marriët Schuurman, Austria – H.E. Dr Heidemaria Gürer, Pakistan – H.E. Mrs. Iffat Imran Gardezi, Kosovo – H.E. Vjosa Dobruna, Estonia – H.E. Ms Kaili Terras, Portugal – H.E. Mrs. Rosa Batoréu, Albania – H.E. Adia Sakiqi, Chile – H.E. Maria Teresa de Jesus Infante Caffi, Palestine – H.E. Rawan Sulaiman, Lebanon – Ms. Abir Ali, Romania – H.E. Brandusa Predescu, Brazil – H.E. Ms. Regina Maria Cordeiro Dunlop, Cameroon – H.E. Odette Melono, New…

  • Openness from tradition. The consular work of the City of Frankfurt am Main

    By Mayor Peter Feldmann, Lord Mayor of Frankfurt am Main. Representations of foreign states reside in capital cities? Usually, but not always! Frankfurt is certainly not the seat of the provincial government, but nevertheless the majority of the 108 consulates in the State of Hessen are located in the economic and logistical centre of the state. The Hessian Consular Corps therefore enjoys a special privilege, as it is cared for equally by the Hessian state government as well as the municipal authorities of the City of Frankfurt am Main. The Hessian State Chancellery and the Frankfurt Department of Communications and…

  • My resignation as ‘the city ambassador of The Hague’ after 14 years

                                By Jhr mr Alexander W. Beelaerts van Blokland. This will be my last contribution to Diplomat Magazine. To say goodbye. During many years I wrote articles every month in my honorary function as ‘Special Advisor International Affairs of the City of The Hague’, or –as some Dutch newspapers (NRC Handelsblad, De Telegraaf, AD Haagsche Courant) called me several years ago and ever since (with a wink !)- ‘the city ambassador of The Hague’. In the 80’s and especially the 90’s of the 20th century The Haghe…

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Diplomatic News

Indonesian Farewell party and Cultural Fest

Dec 28, 2017

By Roy Lie A Tjam. The Indonesian Marching Band Gita Bahana Nusantara Jakarta on a tour in Europe paid a courtesy visit to the Embassy of Indonesia in The Hague. Before coming to the Netherlands the band performed in Italy. In fact, the band was in the Netherlands to participate in a World Brass Band Competition, WMC Kerkrade-Limburg 2017. The band ended on the third place and won three Bronze medals, not bad for a novice. A presentation was organized at the Nusantara auditorium of the Indonesian Embassy during the summer. The youngsters put on a dazzling spectacle. H. E….

The Ambassador of El Salvador Presents Letter of Credence

Dec 27, 2017

On the picture  Mr. Gregorio Arturo Palacios Cornejo and Ms. Susana Patricia Azucena Mancia and His Excellency Agustin Vásquez Gómez. By Roy Lie A Tjam. The Ambassador of the Republic of El Salvador to the Netherlands H.E. Agustín Vásquez Gómez, presented his letters of credence to His Majesty King Willem Alexander of the Kingdom of the Netherlands last November. Also present at the presentation ceremony was the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands H.E. Mr. Halbe Zijlstra. Ambassador Agustín Vásquez Gómez characterizes the presentation ceremony as a grand and memorable moment. Following the presentation ceremony at the Noordeinde Palace,…

Romanian artists on Dutch stages – two generations connected through the passion for music

Dec 27, 2017

By Djoeke Altena. The Romanian Embassy to the Netherlands proudly hosted their first of many events in the light of their project ‘Musical encounters at the embassy of Romania’. A series of encounters where Romanian musicians and artists, with a Romanian origin, background or home, show their talent. On 17 October 2017 H.E. Brånduşa Predescu, Ambassador of Romania to The Netherlands, welcomed the members of the diplomatic corps, members of the Romanian and members of the business community for a concert by two talented Romanian-Dutch musicians. H.E. Brånduşa Predescu , warmly welcomed all the guest. ” I am happy and…

ICTY Symposium provides final reflections on the Tribunal’s legacy

Dec 24, 2017

The ICTY held its final Symposium at Leiden University’s The Hague Campus. The full-day Symposium, entitled “Looking Back to Move Forward: Final Reflections on the ICTY”, included four high-level panels, each focusing on a different area of the ICTY’s work and on its relevance for the future of international criminal justice. Welcoming remarks were delivered by Saskia Bruines, Deputy Mayor for Knowledge Economy, International Affairs, Youth and Education for the City of The Hague; ICTY President Carmel Agius; and Professor Carsten Stahn, Programme Director of Leiden University’s Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies. President Agius set the tone for the…

Celebrating the 150th anniversary of Maria, by Jorge Issacs

Dec 23, 2017

On the picture  the Charge d’affairs, a.i. to the Netherlands, Mr Álvaro Gutiérrez Botero. Embassy of Colombia to the Kingdom of the Netherlands commemorated 150th anniversary of the publication of the novel “María” by Jorge Isaacs on 7 December 2017 with literary event. Together with the Hispanic Association of The Hague, the Embassy organized in Branoul Theater the literary conference “María y la posibilidad del amor” given by Doctor Gabriel Inzaurralde, Professor of Latin American Literature from Leiden University.   At the beginning of the activity, booklets with excerpts of chapters I to IV of the novel “María” were offered…

ICTY marks official closure with moving Ceremony in The Hague

Dec 22, 2017

President Carmel Agius, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres and ICTY Judge Theodor Meron. Yesterday, the official ICTY Closing Ceremony took place at the prestigious Hall of Knights (Ridderzaal) of the Dutch Parliament in The Hague. His Majesty, King Willem-Alexander of The Netherlands, and United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres honoured the ICTY with their presence, joining the three Principals of the ICTY, former Judges and Principals, and numerous other distinguished guests. This historic occasion gathered together the Tribunal’s significant supporters and contributors from throughout its 24-plus years, and the high-level guests created a memorable atmosphere in the beautiful Hall. Other attendees…

The President of the Assembly of States Parties meets with the UN Secretary-General and the President of the General Assembly

Dec 22, 2017

The new President of the Assembly of States Parties, Mr. OGon Kwon (Republic of Korea)  with the former President Mr. Sidiki Kaba. On 15 December 2017, the new President of the Assembly of States Parties, Mr. OGon Kwon (Republic of Korea), met with the President of the General Assembly of the United Nations, H.E. Mr. Miroslav Lajčák, and with the United Nations Secretary-General of the United Nations, H.E. Mr. António Guterres. President Kwon was accompanied by the two Vice-Presidents of the Assembly, H.E. Ambassador Momar Diop (Senegal) and H.E. Ambassador Michal Mlynár (Slovakia), who will be coordinators of The Hague…

United Nations Secretary-General visits International Criminal Court

Dec 22, 2017

H.E. Mr António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations and the President of the International Criminal Court, Judge Silvia Fernández de Gurmendi.   On 21 December 2017, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, H.E. Mr António Guterres visited the International Criminal Court (“ICC” or “Court’), where he was received by the President of the Court, Judge Silvia Fernández de Gurmendi, and met with ICC Deputy Prosecutor James Stewart on behalf of Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda.  This was Mr Guterres’ first visit to the seat of the ICC in The Hague, The Netherlands. President Fernández expressed the Court’s gratitude, stating: “while the…

United Arab Emirates National Day 2017

Dec 21, 2017

On the image H.E. Saeed Ali Alnowais, Ambassador of the UAE with the  UAE Delegation to OPCW and  Ms. Dr. Alya Bukhater, Counsellor at the Embassy. By Roy Lie A Tjam. The Hague, 1st December 2017. On this day, H.E. Saeed Ali Alnowais gathered with hundreds of guest for the 46th anniversary of the UAE. The guests included colleagues, diplomats, Dutch governments representatives, representatives of the business community as well as friends and the diaspora. A pleasant atmosphere reigned at the Kurhaus Hotel. H.E. Saeed Ali Alnowais,  after welcoming the many guests expressed his gratitude for the excellent cooperation between the…

Centième Anniversaire de la Révolution Ukrainienne

Dec 18, 2017

L’ambassadeur Ukranien en Belgique Mykola Tochytskyi  pendant son discours. Le 6 décembre 2017, à l’occasion de la célébration du centième anniversaire des événements de la Révolution ukrainienne de 1917-1921, du centième anniversaire de la création du service diplomatique d’Ukraine et du centième anniversaire des Forces armées d’Ukraine, l’Ambassade d’Ukraine en Belgique, la Représentation d’Ukraine auprès de l’Union Européenne et la Mission d’Ukraine auprès de l’OTAN ont organisé un événement conjoint, lors duquel on a présenté des expositions, consacrées à ces dates très importantes en Ukraine, ainsi que le stand «Les Forces armées ukrainiennes aujourd’hui». Une autre exposition – «La Belgique et l’Ukraine:…

Diplomatic Pouch

A speech for our King in Westminster Hall

By Barend ter Haar. In the autumn of 1688, a relative of mine, William of Orange, assembled in Holland a fleet of almost 500 ships with 40.000 men aboard to invade England. In November he disembarked in Devon and in December Dutch forces entered London. For the next thirteen years William III was not only Stadtholder of Holland and Zealand, but also King of England, Scotland and Ireland. The contrast between the arrival of William III in London and the way Queen Máxima and I are received on our State Visit is enormous. I am happy to say that in…

Hong Kong feast straight out of a martial arts classic

On the picture, chefs and students of Hong Kong’s Chinese Culinary Institute turned the gastronomic fancies of Jin Yong’s novel “The Legend of the Eagle-Shooting Heroes” into reality. The ham used to make “Twenty-four Bridges of Moonlight” can be seen in the centre of the picture. Any kind of food, it would seem, can be found in culinary paradise Hong Kong, from Michelin-starred restaurants to tasty and authentic street food.   The 2017 guide references 49 different cuisines and 61 starred-restaurants, including six awarded three stars, a rich offering indeed for a territory 30 times smaller than Belgium. Only a…

The new Dutch Cabinet: profiles of Ministers and State Secretaries. Part I.

By Anton Lutter. After the longest period of negotiating in Dutch political history – 208 days – a cabinet has been formed by the VVD, CDA, D’66 and CU political parties under the slogan “Trust in the future”, with Mark Rutte as third time Prime Minister, thus starts cabinet Rutte III. In part I and II, we will introduce the 24 Ministers and State Secretaries who were initiated by H.M. King Willem-Alexander at palace Noordeinde the 26th of October. Mr. Mark Rutte Prime Minister and Minister of General Affairs, is the party leader of the largest coalition party in government…

Global Justice and the Rule of Law: the future of the International Liberal Order

Intervention by Steven van Hoogstraten, CEO Hague Institute,  before the Human Rights Committee of the Liberal International, at the “Europa Huis”. Mr Chairman, ladies and gentlemen Many thanks for the invitation to come and speak before your parliamentary committee this morning on behalf of the Hague Institute for Global Justice. In the words of the former Mayor of the Hague, the liberal politician Jozias van Aartsen, “the Hague Institute for Global justice was established 5 years ago in response to a growing demand for policy relevant research and innovative thinking on critical issues of peace and justice. Today the Institute plays…

Diplomat Magazine’s new edition – The magic of The Hague

Diplomat Magazine, the first diplomatic magazine in the Netherlands, is more active than ever. One need only look back at our recent successes, including the innumerable events organised by the magazine in the last five months, the special 10th Anniversary issue for the embassy of Rwanda, the development of the magazine into a leading online publication with hundreds of thousands of readers, and now this special printed edition.   Inside the microcosm of The Hague, the picture of the world is composed of unique elements. In terms of international politics The Hague is different; here diplomats live in an exceptional…

Wuxia literature and cinema, an essential part of Hong Kong identity

On the picture portrait and works of Jin Yong. Chinese martial arts, often named under the umbrella term of wushu or kung fu, involve exercising the mind as well as the body, a strenuous and continued effort devoted to one’s pursuit. This resonates with the Hong Kong spirit – strive for perfection, never give up, and at the same time, be skillful and flexible in facing challenges. Wuxia literature has a long history. Xia were soldiers originally fighting for one of the contending Warring States, who later became knights-errant of the common people, fighting against injustice and corruption. The genre…

EU Project in Uzbekistan

Dr Alfred Kellermann. EU Project “Further Strenghtening of the Bi-Cameral Parliamentary System and Communications between the Parliament and the Regional Assemblies in Uzbekistan”. By Dr Alfred Kellermann. In October 2012 I was involved as Team Leader in Uzbekistan in an EU Project which had the objective “To support the current process of reforms and further democratisation in Uzbekistan by modernising the Uzbek Parliament and reinforcing its relationship with society.” Objective 1 – Capacity building was to increase the effectiveness of the legislative process and to reinforce the parliamentary mechanisms for monitoring law implementation at different levels in line with EU…

Maasai Wanderings and Nasikia Camps Tanzania going ahead

Naseeb Mfinanga, Donna Duggan and family. Maasai Wanderings and Nasikia Camps Tanzania  announce Advisors and Executive nominees Leading African tourism companies Maasai Wanderings and Nasikia Tented Camps (Tanzania) have released the companies’ first public statement following the tragic loss of Managing Director and Co-Founder Mr Naseeb Mfinanga. Mr Mfinanga was one of 11 people who lost their lives on 15 November, 2017 when a Cessna 208B  Grand Caravan aircraft operated by Coastal Aviation was involved in an accident which took place above the Ngorongoro Conservation Area in northern Tanzania. Mr Mfinanga’s brother Shatri Mfinanga and the company’s graphics specialist Gift…

Mongolia Diplomats Meet and Greet

H.E. Mr. Od Och, Ambassador of Mongolia,  spouse Mrs. Tsolmon Jadamba  and Ms. Maralgua Od, Ambassador’s daughter with members of the Khan Bogd ensemble. By Sheila Turabaz. Last November’s Diplomats Meet and Greet was centered around Mongolian culture in all its splendor. Organized by the Embassy of Mongolia in Brussels, Diplomat Magazine and the Diplomatic Card at the Carlton Ambassador Hotel, guests experienced enchanting Mongolia through live music performances and fantastic food. Guests were entertained with traditional Mongolian music, played by the Khan Bogd music ensemble, dressed in traditional Mongolian “deel” clothing . The traditional folk music of Mongolia has…

Twenty young people “Walk the Hong Kong Spirit” at the Oxfam Trailwalker

Special Representative for Hong Kong Economic and Trade Affairs to the EU, Ms Shirley Lam, with the fastest team at the Oxfam Trailwalker. As one of its initiatives to mark the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region’s 20th anniversary, the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Brussels (HKETO, Brussels) brought 20 young people from Hong Kong to participate in the 100-kilometre Oxfam Trailwalker challenge in Belgium’s High Fens around Eupen on 26-27 August. The challenge consists in teams of four walkers having to complete a 100km trek in no more than 30 hours. Although it is now a worldwide event…

Corneliu Pivariu. Photographer: Ionus Paraschiv.

An utopian solution for the Middle East

By Corneliu Pivariu. During the last 20 years we witnessed numerous “calligraphy exercises” or exercises directly on the map as far as the possible developments in the Middle East were concerned, some of them worth paying attention to, mainly through the authors’ prism and the interests behind them and less through any practical elements they suggested. Here we are 100 years later after the Balfour Declaration (2nd of November, 2017) and the developments after the two World Wars and the end of the Cold War foreshadow the continuation of an incertitude and conflict situation in this area. If after the…

Etapas del desarrollo, crisis y familias migrantes 2/4

Por Silvia Korenblum. Las etapas del desarrollo con sus crisis vitales son esperables para todos los individuos. Surgen desde la naturaleza misma de la biología y de la sociedad y atraviesan la estructura familiar. Adolescencia Una crisis de desarrollo por excelencia es la adolescencia, pasaje de niño a adulto, dolorosa y excitante travesía. Siguiendo las ideas de Arminda Aberastury (1983), podemos decir que el adolescente realiza tres duelos fundamentales: a) duelo por el cuerpo infantil perdido, siente sus cambios como algo ex- terno frente a lo cual se encuentra como espectador impotente de lo que ocurre en su propio organismo;…

What will France’s foreign policy be under Emmanuel Macron presidency?

By Corneliu Pivariu. After around six months since taking over the presidential mandate (14 May 2017), president Emmanuel Macron’s foreign policy begins to take shape after he made tours abroad in Eastern and Central Europe (Austria, Romania and Bulgaria and met political leaders of Slovakia and the Czech Republic), in West Africa (Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast and Ghana), Middle East – United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi Arabia. What president Macron contemplates in his foreign policy is to restore France’s status of great power in matters of foreign policy (the status of permanent member of the UN Security Council with…

Tillerson press conference at NATO

Press Conference by Rex Tillerson (US Secretary of State) Left: Ambassador Kay Bailey Hutchison (US Permanent Representative to NATO). Photography US Embassy in Brussels. The US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson visited NATO Headquarters during his travels last week to Belgium, Austria, and France.  On December 6, 2017, he spoke at a press conference in Brussels.   Here below an extract of this speech: The United States, obviously, I think has affirmed now on multiple occasions our support for NATO’s mission. We know that the security NATO provides protects Western democratic principles, protects our right to live in freedom. To that end, the United…

Although Mobility is the New Normal, Ungoverned Migration Continues to Divide Us

By Mr Martin Wyss, Chief of Mission, IOM International Organization for Migration in the Netherlands. The Secretary General of the United Nations mentioned in a recent speech that he was a migrant too, but not one who had to resort to a leaky boat. He also said that safe migration must not be limited to the global elite (for the full text see his twitter below). With these truisms, he captured two coexisting, yet starkly diverging realities clashing on the same planet. First, while the Secretary General certainly is part of the global elite, he is also part of an…

Review: Atsana Expo 2017

From June to September 2017, Atsana, the capital of Kazakhstan hosted the Atsana Expo show case, where over 120 countries and 22 international organizations demonstrated the latest innovations in the clean energy sector. Titled the Future of Energy, this expo focused on four themes, including the ‘Reduction of Carbon Emissions’, ‘Energy for Life’, ‘Energy for All’, and the ‘World of Energy,’ which focused on the role of each individual’s contribution to the efficient use of energy. The Dutch pavilion was launched by the Minister of Economic Affairs of the Netherlands, at that time Mr. Henk Kamp and the Kazakhstan Vice…