Paraguayan leader makes historic first visit to Israel


( Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes made the first official visit by a leader of his country to Israel on Tuesday where he met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with Paraguayan President Horacio Cartes in Jerusalem. Credit: GPO/Kobi Gideon.

"President Cartes, Horacio, bienvenidos, it's my pleasure to welcome you and your entire delegation to Israel on this historic visit, the first visit of a President of Paraguay to Israel. It reflects something very deep,” Netanyahu said in a joint meeting.

Our relationship, Netanyahu continued, “It reflects something very deep…Not only the growing partnership between our two countries but also your personal friendship for the State of Israel and also some deeper roots of, some parallels, in our history: Small countries surrounded by a lot of big countries, not always on the friendliest terms. The hope of securing prosperous, secure future in our region.”

According to the Prime Minister’s Office, the two leaders signed a number of agreements to cooperate in areas such as legal matters, education, the Holocaust and culture as well as a Memorandum of Understanding on technical assistance for Paraguay. It was agreed that Israel would send a delegation to Paraguay to boost agricultural output and that Paraguay would send a delegation to Israel to learn about technology.

Paraguay was one of 33 United Nations members to vote in support of U.N. Resolution 181 that helped to create the State of Israel in 1947.

“In the name of my country, of all the population I want you to know Israel is in the heart of all Paraguay. We like you very much,” President Cartes said.

Posted on July 20, 2016 .