Ilan Mor in Debrecen

Local News University

Ilan Mor, ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary of Israel has spent  2 days in Debrecen. During his stay he visited the City Hall and also met some university students in the Diagnostic Center.Ilan Mor came into office in Budapest in September 2011 and in some months he visited Debrecen.
During the meeting in the City Hall, there was some talk about the active connection between Debrecen and its sister city Rishon Le Zion. The cultural delegation of the city is a regular participant of Debrecen’s most famous event, the Flower Carnival.
Maintaining a good relationship with Israel is also important for Debrecen because of TEVA Pharmaceutical Company which takes an active part in Debrecen’s life e.g. by ensuring many workplaces and being the main sponsor of DVSC.

The Ambassador met the students of the University of Debrecen in the Diagnostic Center in Wednesday afternoon. After he briefly outlined the the present situation of his country, he answered the questions of the students.
He talked about the present-day challenges that Israel has to face nowadays, for example the civil war situation in Syria that can result in a refugee flow, Iran’s nuclear program, the strengthening Islamic fundamentalism in the countries of the Maghreb area and the Egyptian riots that make recreation in the well-known Sinai peninsula impossible. He told that the situation in Egypt makes Israel’s life difficult, since the once flourishing tourist paradise is the hiding place of terrorists and gun-runners working from Libia and South Sudan. The region that means a high security risk for Israel is separated by a 230 km long “fence”. The ambassador told that the country remains silent and takes no sides in connection with any of the revolutions.

In connection with Iran, Ilan Mor highlighted that it’s important to keep it under economic and diplomatic pressure becausee with these tools they can force the country to cooperate with the international community. He told that he sees that the Iranian leadership just wants to counterweigh the inner problems with outer actions and Israel only has problems with the Iranian leadership, not the Iranian people.

“Israel is a normal country, with difficulties and challenges. I want to see this face of it, not the one that is seen in the television”, said the Ambassador. Israel has problems, like any other countries and Bibi Netanyahu is a person that not every likes. Ilan Mor told that even his own daughter took part in last years’ demonstration (people demonstrated against the rise of rental fees, food and fuel prices, they demanded the improvement of health care and the education system and the reduction of taxes).
As he told, his aim is to show that all the problems and troubles are small compared to the natural, economic and cultural treasures of the Jewish State. The Israeli students all agreed with him.

Answering questions, the Ambassador promised to help the Israeli students studying here e.g. with organizing cultural programmes (by inviting Israeli artists, musicians and scientists), or supporting their national holidays and memorials with flags and books.

He tried to comfort the worried saying that Hungary is still a safe country, either from political or from economical point of view.
Though there’s an extremist party in the Hungarian Parliament, there’s no need to worry. He spoke about meeting Dr. Tamás Gaudi-Nagy not long ago. This man is a representative of the Jobbik Party, and also a member of the friendsip section of the parliaments of the two countries. The Ambassador told that he thinks the extremists can only be represented in the next Parliament elected in 2014 (which will have only 200 members instead of the present 386) in case of a serious economic decline. In his opinion, all the most important numbers are in the positive range and the Hungarian economy is stable. This was also confirmed by the president of the Hungarian National Bank.

Ilan Mor is travelling throughout Hungary because, as he said, he would like to know all parts of the country. “There’s also life outside of Budapest.” He found it important to meet the youth either in Debrecen, Pécs, Pápa or anywhere he’s invited to.

In his interview given to the Hajdú-Bihari Napló, he told that Israel and Hungary can cooperate in many fields, e.g. in agriculture which has a great importance in both countries.


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