Israeli Government Makes Relationship With Bohol Province

By Angela Sanchez

News Archive - The Israeli government has again strengthened its ties with the provincial government when it sponsored the On-the-Spot Course on Integrated Rural Development Planning, Micro-Enterprise and Rural Tourism Development.

Israeli Ambassador to the Philippines Yehoshua Sagi keynoted the opening of the 12-day training, which is running from March 1 to 12, here in Tagbilaran City.

Gov. Erico B. Aumentado was on hand to welcome Sagi and his wife, Hanna, upon arrival in the city last Monday. Sagi is the second Israeli envoy to visit Bohol, following his predecessor Amb. Irit Ben-Abba.

Two Israeli technical experts are here to lecture on integrated rural development planning, micro-enterprise and rural tourism development to 45 selected participants from the provinces of Bohol, Cotabato and Sarangani.

In his keynote speech, Sagi pointed out that development and tourism cannot thrive so long as the government carries the burden of safety in its back.

At the same time, he called on media to keep to the facts without blowing them up.

By way of explanation, Sagi cited his native land, Israel, where the reports from CNN and other international news organization picture it as a dangerous place to walk in. He said, however, that in reality, this is not the case. Although bombings go on, life also goes on as usual in Israel, Sagi pointed out.

"If we bow our heads to the terrorists, it will be the end of the free world. We have to keep our heads up and continue on," the envoy advised.

Aumentado, on the other hand, thanked the Israeli government, particularly its Center for International Cooperation (Mashav) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, for authorizing the 12-day training, which is being handled by Michael Gorelik, the deputy director for international cooperation of the Weitz Center for Development Studies and Ben Josef Ilan, a professor and technical expert in rural tourism.- published in 2004