First major CAMERA-sponsored event in India highlights strong bilateral ties

With headlines that allege a momentous BDS campaign pushing Israel to the fringes in terms of global cooperation, it might be surprising to learn that this is certainly not the case.

India is a prime example of a nation strengthening its bond with the Jewish State. The magnitude of these growing ties between Israel and India cannot be understated.

At the first major CAMERA-sponsored event in India, CAMERA Fellow and PhD candidate, Hriday Sarma, organized a productive dialogue on the prospects of growing collaboration between India and Israel, focusing on the higher-education sector.

A representative from the Embassy of Israel in India addressed Israel’s initiatives to reinforce cooperation between the two nations, including opportunities for Indian students to participate in research and educational opportunities in Israel. Israel offers Indian students wishing to study at an Israeli university up to a full-ride scholarship. There are currently more than 550 students from India pursuing studies in Israel.

Speakers and attendees at CAMERA-supported event in India pose for group photo.

Speakers discussed the historic ties between Israel and India, which extend more than 3,000 years during the First Temple Period and noted the present opportunities for collaboration.

Collaboration was discussed in the healthcare, agriculture and artificial intelligence sectors, where both countries can cooperate to gain mutual benefits.

This landmark event for CAMERA also included a brief discussion on media bias, discussing the common misrepresentation of Israel in global news coverage. In 2017, CAMERA prompted a record-breaking 185 corrections to erroneous coverage of Israel at news outlets worldwide. That is almost one correction for every two days.

Israel and India hope to expand bilateral cooperation in an array of fields from defense to education. India is currently Israel’s largest defense market, accounting for more than $1 billion per year. Both nations hope to increase annual bilateral trade from its current $5 billion to more than $20 billion in only five years.

Indian PM Modi hugs with Israeli PM Netanyahu as they deliver joint statements. (Reuters)

In January 2018, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu along with his counterpart Prime Minister Narendra Modi praised a “dawn of a new era” in bilateral relations during a meeting in Delhi, India. The two leaders boast a friendly relationship, with Netanyahu even asserting his willingness to “do a yoga class” with Modi.

With cooperation in defense, urban infrastructure, digital technologies, and agriculture, water management, the Israel-India relationship is a hopeful prospect in an already thriving relationship between two friendly nations.

Contributed by CAMERA intern Joshua Gannon.

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