News Digest – International Relations & Foreign Affairs (October 1 – 7)

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Constitution amendment

Israel-Nepal signs migrant contract: Israel and Nepal have signed an agreement to send Nepali caregivers to Israel. This is an intense labour pact between the two countries as Israel has remained one of the priorities for Nepal migrants to work at. Nepal’s ambassador to Israel Dr Anjan Shakya signed the contract with the Government of Israel, and 500 workers will be sent in the first phase over the next three months.

Nepal joins India’s air bubble: Nepal is going to enter India’s ‘air-bubble’ scheme to repatriate migrant workers from across the southern neighbour as Dashain is nearing. Under this scheme, the price of the ticket will be fixed; passengers must book tickets through the embassies, and must follow the quarantine guidelines. Thousands of people stranded on both sides of the border are waiting for the flights to resume, but the actual figure can only be ascertained once the booking opens.

Yubaraj Khatiwada appointed as envoy: The government decided to appoint Former Finance Minister and Communications Minister Yubaraj Khatiwada as Nepal’s new ambassador to the United States. However, this appointment is subject to approval by Parliamentary Hearing Committee.

Nepal-Korea relations: The recently appointed Korean ambassador to Nepal Park Chong-suk has vowed to take the bilateral relations of Nepal and Korea to new heights during a special function in the presence of President Bidya Devi Bhandari.

Nepal-EU joint commission meeting: Nepal and EU held the 12th joint commission meeting on October 2 via video call. The session emphasized the challenges posed by COVID-19 and the implications on both EU and Nepal. EU also extended financial support to Nepal in its fight with the pandemic. The two partners also agreed on smooth execution of the G20 Debt Service Suspension Initiative. Further, the EU applauded PM Oli’s commitment to transitional justice.

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