Israel and Bhutan normalize ties
Israel and Bhutan normalize tiesIsraeli Embassy, New Delhi

The Kingdom of Bhutan and Israel this evening signed a full diplomatic relationship. The signing ceremony was held at the residence of Israeli Ambassador to India, Dr. Ron Malka. Ambassador Malka held an official exchange ceremony with his colleague, Ambassador of Bhutan in India, Major General Vetsop Namgyel.

Last weekend, Foreign Minister Ashkenazi spoke with his Bhutanese counterpart, Foreign Minister Tandy Dorji. During the conversation, it was agreed on the date of the signing as well as on the formulation of a joint work plan in the areas of water management, agriculture, health and more.

Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi said: "I would like to thank the Kingdom of Bhutan and congratulate it on its decision to establish full diplomatic relations with Israel. This decision is a milestone in deepening Israel's ties with Asia.

"I invite my friend, H. H. Dorji, to visit Israel to promote cooperation between the two countries. I sincerely hope that in the coming year we will also host the King of Bhutan in Jerusalem for a first state visit of its kind.

"I would also like to thank the Israeli Ambassador to India, Dr. Ron Malka and his staff, for strengthening our relationship with Bhutan and for building the outline that led to the signing of the agreement on the establishment of diplomatic relations between us."

The Foreign Affairs Ministry maintains contact with the Kingdom through the Mashav Division, and in Israel, Bhutan students participate in agricultural tutoring in Israel.

In recent years, secret contacts have been conducted between the countries, led by the Israeli Foreign Affairs Ministry, with the aim of establishing official relations, and there have been reciprocal visits by delegations from Israel to Timpo, the capital of Bhutan and Bhutan in Israel.

The Kingdom of Bhutan, bordering India and China, lies in the heart of the Himalayas and is one of the most beautiful and unique tourist destinations in the world. Bhutan has full diplomatic relations with only 53 countries and is the country that gave the world the "happiness index".