French Embassy celebrates its National Day (Bastille Day) in Kathmandu
14 July 2016:
French Embassy in Kathmandu celebrated its National Day, also known as Bastille Day, on Thursday, July 14th, at Hotel Radisson amidst a ceremony attended by about 350 guests comprising of Ministers, Secretaries of the government, members of the diplomatic and business community etc. The chief guest for the evening was Right Honourable Vice President Mr Nanda Bahadur PUN.
You will find below a welcome speech by Ambassador Carmona as well as a few photos.
— - Begin speech---
NAMASTE, BONSOIR, GOOD EVENING,
Right honourable Vice-President Mr. Nanda Bahadur Pun,
Dear Ambassadors, colleagues,
Ladies and gentlemen,
हाम्रो राष्ट्रिय दिवसमा हजुरहरुलाई स्वागत छ
I am pleased and honored to celebrate for the first time in your company the French national day, the “Bastille day”. Briefly, allow me to share with you its historical significance.
On 14th July 1789, the people of Paris stormed and destroyed the “Bastille”, a military fortress and also a prison. They were angry because bread was lacking, due to the bad weather since the winter before, but mostly because they had no civil and political rights whereas too many taxes weighed only on them, the common people.
The fall of the Bastille heralded the start of the French revolution which soon adopted the “Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen”, then the first but not the last French Constitution and in 1790, the Republican motto “Freedom, equality, fraternity”.
In 2016, these revolutionary values are more important than ever, because they are still challenged. It is still revolutionary in France and elsewhere to be committed to fraternity, meaning accepting all humans as they are, whatever their religion, their sexual orientation and the colour of their skin.
France cherishes diversity, which has served our country so well, we only to have to look at our glorious football team !
And for all these reasons, Right honorable vice-President, France has hailed your new Constitution as a major step in your peace process, on the road to an inclusive democracy.
Since the Revolution, the world has changed and France is constantly adjusting to the global trends.
After two horrific world wars, we have acknowledged with Germany and other Europeans that it was time to enshrine peace in Europe and that is the main reason why we have created the European Union. Two weeks back, the German and French foreign ministers, Mr Steinmeier and Mr Ayrault, have reaffirmed that the EU will continue, and strengthen with those who share our goals, because we believe that in a dangerous world, political union is the best way to preserve our independence and security.
Security is a major concern. Facing many threats, including terrorism, our citizens want a more efficient fight against the fanatics. It requires a better coordination of our security forces and more international cooperation. In that regard, we enjoy an excellent and growing relationship with the Nepalese army and police forces.
Regarding asylum seekers and migrants, we believe the proper answer is not to build walls between us, but to implement a more integrated European policy, including a multinational border and coast guard and an European asylum agency.
Security and stability also depend on stronger economies, attractivity to foreign investment and new technologies. We must invest more in our youths, to provide them with skills and an open minded spirit.
I am proud of the many young French people turning to Nepal with generosity. They want to build a better future, not only for themselves but also for the rest of the world. Involved in NGOs, they help Nepalese people to overcome the hardships they have endured since 2015. That is the spirit of fraternity which has defined our revolution, together with freedom and equality.
We believe in equality between all nations. That has been a key in the success of COP21 in Paris in December 2015. Along with the United nations, we consulted each of its 195 members and they all had a voice in Paris, including Nepal which played its part as a responsible member of the international society.
With the same spirit, Right honorable vice-president, Nepal and France are regular partners in peace keeping operations and we welcomed the high level participation of your country in a recent conference in New York about the protection of civilians in armed conflicts. With the same goal, your security officers are keen to improving, with our support, their French language ability.
Peace and stability also rely on economic partnerships, and I hope we have more economic successes to celebrate in the coming years.
Right honorable vice-President, ladies and gentlemen, France in Nepal is alive and kicking ! I am very happy to organize this traditional party with the small but dedicated team of the French Embassy and of Alliance française de Katmandou, which implements many linguistic and cultural interactions.
And with the financial support of our sponsors : AGK trading, French Himalayan Cheese, Gorkha brewery, Morpho, Nepal France Chamber of Commerce, Nepal Investment Bank Limited, Nepal Pavilion, Oberthur, POMA, Qatar airways, Radisson hotel, SYSTRA, Toyota.
DHANYABAD, MERCI, THANK YOU.
May I invite you, Right honorable vice-President, and all our friends here to share our champagne – the real one -, French wines and fine foods, including Franco-Nepalese cheese.
Let us share a toast to the French-Nepalese friendship.
— -End speech---
Click herefor more photos.