‘Why no ambassador or embassy in Israel until 1992?’, asks S Jaishankar | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

‘Why no ambassador or embassy in Israel until 1992?’, asks S Jaishankar

Apr 24, 2024 01:44 AM IST

External affairs minister questioned why India did not have an embassy in Israel until 1992 and why no Indian prime minister visited Israel before Narendra Modi

External affairs minister S Jaishankar on Tuesday raised the Israel issue, questioning why there was no ambassador and an embassy in the Jewish country until 1992.

External affairs minister S Jaishankar.
External affairs minister S Jaishankar.

“Think of a country like Israel, people speak today, saying everybody is the same and we should not bring faith into any discussion. Israel became independent in 1948; from 1948 to 1992, we choose not to have an Ambassador and an Embassy in Israel. Why? From 1992, we had an Embassy; from 1992 to 2017, when PM Modi went to Israel, no PM of India ever went to Israel,” the minister was quoted by ANI as saying at the forum for Nationalist Thinkers- Hyderabad Chapter 'Foreign Policy The India Way: From Diffidence To Confidence in Hyderabad.

"Think about it, and then tell me that faith has no influence on our policy. What is it? Is it not vote bank?" the minister added. India officially recognised Israel in 1950, but the two countries established full diplomatic relations only on January 29, 1992.

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Last month, Jaishankar had expressed concern over civilian deaths in the Hamas-Israel war, saying,"How different pulls and pressures can be. On one hand, what happened on October 7 was terrorism. On the other hand, nobody would countenance the death of innocent civilians. Countries may be justified in their own minds in responding, but you cannot have a response that...every response must take into account something called international humanitarian law."

Last year, when Palestinian terrorist group Hamas launched coordinated attacks on Israel, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had spoken to his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu and expressed solidarity with the Jewish nation.

“I thank Prime Minister @netanyahu for his phone call and providing an update on the ongoing situation. People of India stand firmly with Israel in this difficult hour. India strongly and unequivocally condemns terrorism in all its forms and manifestations," the prime minister had posted on X on October 10.

(With PTI, ANI inputs)

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