Nepali representatives to the United Nations (UN) voted in favor of a proposal at General Assembly emergency session called at the request of Arab and Muslim states to vote on the condemnation of the decision by the United States of America to recognize Jerusalem as the future capital of Israel.
At a time when the new world order is in the remaking in Middle East, Nepal again stood to save the old order on Arab-Israel issue voting against United States President’ planned to relocate the American Embassy of Tel Aviv to Jerusalem on December 6. If Nepal had problem voting against request of Arab and Muslim states, Nepal would have option to absent from the voting. However, Nepal Misses Opportunities Turning To Real Politic In Middle East.
According to a report, out of the 60,000 foreign caregivers in Israel, 15 percent are from Nepal. According to KavLaOved, an Israeli NGO that provides advice and legal aid to workers in Israel, Israeli labor laws guarantee workers one day off in a week, but many Nepali caregivers choose to work seven days in return for extra cash. A care giver get minimum of $1,400 a month as a salary compared to less about $300 in Gulf.
Nepali Caregiver in Israel: Photo Courtesy: Nepali Times
Currently, there are more than 5000 Nepalese are working in Israel in agriculture sector and caregiver. Had Nepal just absent, more room had opened for Nepal.
However, Nepal stood for Arab and Muslims proposal against the United States in UN Voting against Israel. Unfortunately, Nepal has gained nothing out of this but hurts old friend. Had Nepal absent from the motion, it would have facing saving.
Along with Bhutan, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Bahamas, Benin, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cameroon, Canada, Colombia, Croatia, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Fiji, Haiti, Hungary, Jamaica, Kiribati, Latvia, Lesotho, Malawi, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Rwanda, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Uganda, Vanuatu also were absent from the voting. Those absented from the voting are small and big in size.
Since establishment of diplomatic relations sixty years ago, Israel has been providing Nepal much needed support, Nepal rarely has reciprocated to it. When 35 countries including Bhutan were absent in the voting, Nepal voted against the President Donald Trump’s call to make Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Both Israel and Palestine claim Jerusalem to be their capital.
Although Nepal was one of the 128 countries to vote against, what Nepal has economically gained from this voting? What harm would have occurred to Nepal in absenting from the voting?
“Had Nepal absent from the voting, sky would not have fall on its national interest. Rather the voting would have given Nepal a chance to maintain its closer relations with state of Israel,” said a former diplomat. “ At a time when Nepali Congress is heading the government, it was right timing to departure from Nepal’s obsolete foreign policy.”
“If Nepali Congress leader BP Koirala could take such a bold decision as a first South Asian country establishing diplomatic relations with state of Israel in such a hostile world, what prevented present NC leadership just to absent from voting?” asked former diplomat.
Nepal’s Foreign Ministry’s mandarins have their own arguments to justify the decision voting in favor of Arab Muslim Resolution. “Nepal cannot go against the world and leave its previous stand. Voting this time does not mean that we are hostile to Israel. We support Israel’s sovereignty and integrity,” said a senior foreign ministry’s official.
Whatever Nepalese officials tried to convince their stand to vote against Israel, there is little justification. Nepalese officials often give the reason of numbers of Nepalese workers in Gulf states and their future. Philippines, which sends largest numbers of worker in Arab, can absent from voting, cannot Nepal do?
Similarly, Bhutan, which always toes with Indian stand, can go against the voting why not Nepal? Countries around the world pursue their foreign policy to maximize their national interest, cannot Nepal has its own interest with Israel which has been gradually opening its labor market to Nepal as well.
As Nepali Congress government failed to get a chance, can Nepal’s left parties show gut to change Nepal’s position on Israel? The time has come to review Nepal’s policy and decide on its economic and national interest. Nepal has to leave from the cold war mindset on issue of Israel and Palestinian.
Since Israel has been supporting Nepal, the country must reciprocate to save its interest and stand on international area. This is where Nepal can test its true friendship. However, Nepal Misses Opportunities Turning To Real Politic In Middle East