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The Diplomat Magazine. likes. The Diplomat is the premier international current-affairs magazine for the Asia-Pacific region. It reaches an. Fall , Summer , Spring , Winter Magazine Viewer, Magazine Viewer, Magazine Viewer, Magazine Viewer. PDF Version, PDF Version. “The magazine that sheds light on the image of Rwanda to the world”. Dear Readers, and Cooperation. The Diplomatic Magazine online at.

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This month, we examine what's changed (and what hasn't) for India's ruling party, the BJP, between its landslide victory in and this spring's elections. The Diplomat is a current-affairs magazine for the Asia-Pacific, with news and analysis on politics, security, business, technology and life across the region. Please click the images below to open its PDF versions. By and For Diplomats. We are the very first diplomatic magazine in the Netherlands' History, founded on .

Two, the drastic decrease of the price of rice and the apparition of an additional ,t per year demonstrate that the consumption of rice in Haiti has changed to the extent that it outpaces the Haitian agro-productive force of rice in any year. An agreement with which all kinds of tools for disaster risk reduction can be developed and implemented. Meet The talent! The Prosecutor is implementing a new Strategic Plan adopted two years ago. Shipping is indispensable to the world 29 Sep Among members of the diplomatic staff one often counts highly qualified lawyers and judges who, as young students, attended The Hague Academy of International Law.

Email or Phone Password Forgot account? Info and Ads. See more of The Diplomat Magazine on Facebook. Log In. Forgot account? Not Now. Community See All. About See All. Page Transparency See More. Facebook is showing information to help you better understand the purpose of a Page. See actions taken by the people who manage and post content. Related Pages. In the GFCE we will share our experiences and learn from participating nations and non-state actors.

All will benefit from getting the knowledge and best-practices together in one platform. Cyberspace will get better with this initiative, paving the way for further international cooperation. Civil society, the technical community, think tanks and academia will also be encouraged to be involved in the GFCE, contributing to the development of best practices, sharing of knowledge and advising on capacity building efforts.

The four focus areas of the GFCE are: An annual high level meeting amongst members of GFCE will evaluate the G progress made and discuss and formulate requirements as well as best practices in cyber capacity building.

The city of The Hague warmly supports the establishment of the GFCE, which further strengthens the role of The Hague as a central hub for cyber organizations. Barbra de Niet. Would you have ever guessed that a Ministry of Foreign Affairs works on issues such as maternal mortality and sexuality education?

I certainly did not when I applied for diplomatic service. But whilst working as a diplomat in different countries in Asia, Sub-Sahara Africa and Latin America I came to understand how important it is that people, especially adolescents, can make informed decisions and have access to services when it comes to love, sexual relationships and pregnancy. In order to progress on these four goals we work with a variety of different actors; multilateral organizations, governments, civil-society organizations, companies and faith-based organizations.

I think in this work it is crucial to recognize that there is no right or wrong. As a diplomat, I learned that to work effectively with others you have to be able to listen, to find a common language and to treat diverging views with respect.

And to share what you are proud of: The Netherlands won the bid for this great event, which will bring more than 20, people to the Netherlands to discuss the future of the AIDS epidemic, including world leaders, pop stars and VIPs.

The conference is a platform and an instrument. It cements our political commitment to women and girls in Southern Africa, who are especially vulnerable to HIV. The same applies to the status of key populations, such as sexual minorities, who primarily live in middle-income countries.

Central Asia, even face an increase in new infections, especially among key populations. Worldwide, adolescents are the only group amongst whom AIDS-related deaths are not declining and just one in four infected children and adolescents under the age of 15 years has access to lifesaving antiretroviral treatment. The vulnerability of young girls and key populations has been on the Dutch agenda for some time.

Conclusions at the end of the day were ambivalent. Positive in the respect that the number of deaths has been greatly reduced, thanks to medication, education, testing and condom use. But also worrisome: Even in the Netherlands we see new cases of HIV every year.

And some countries, for example in Eastern Europe and. If we want to bring a halt to new infections, we need strong political will and to work on a number of fronts simultaneously: This means making ARTs as affordable and widely available as possible and maintaining proper care for the people who have contracted HIV. But just as importantly, we should keep working on prevention. We cannot accept that people, especially young people, get sick- only to start treating them later in life.

So yes, there is still so much to be done. I invite all of you to join us at AIDS in Amsterdam and see how we can move forward further, together. And to join us in our work as a Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This year it will be seventy years ago that the Second World War came to an end and The Hague was liberated by the Canadians.

That war with the battle for the royal seat in May and the five years that followed, were undoubtedly the most dramatic period in the history of The Hague. A period in which more than 15, people living in The Hague lost their lives. Most, about 12, of them, Jewish residents.

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The war caused huge material damage too, the traces of which can still be seen today. This article is an edited version of the speech given by Mayor Jozias van Aartsen on 1 March this year at the commemoration of the tragic bombing of the Bezuidenhout district of The Hague. The ceremony took place in the Christus Triomfatorkerk Risen Christ Church in the presence of British and other diplomats.

Among those leading the oecumenical service was the Reverend Canon Dr David Stone of Coventry Cathedral, the church destroyed by the Luftwaffe in and which, in , donated a Cross of Nails to the churches of the Bezuidenhout. Lines from a poem by Remco Campert, who was born and raised in The Hague. His father Jan Campert perished in the Neuengamme concentration camp. The actor, Bram van der Vlugt, who also grew up in this city, quoted this poem in a radio interview he gave a few years ago.

During the programme he talked about the dramatic events experienced by his family during the Second World War. It was a distressing story which in many ways reflected the war years of The Hague. When the occupying forces cleared Scheveningen the Van der Vlugt family ended up in the Bezuidenhout.

Along with many other families from Scheveningen and other areas of the city which had been cleared or even torn down. There in the Bezuidenhout, the young Bram then witnessed the terrifying bombing. It was on 3rd March exactly seventy years ago that a large part of the beautiful Hague district of the Bezuidenhout, with its typical architecture and street patterns, was accidentally bombed by the Royal Air Force in an attempt to disable the destructive V2 rockets which the German occupying forces were firing from this area at Britain, causing death and destruction there.

Owing to a compounding of errors the bombs landed instead on a densely populated residential area. More than people lost their lives that day and in the days that followed. With another missing, many of whom were never found. The bombing of the Bezuidenhout, together with the German air raid on Rotterdam and the allied bombing of Nijmegen — also a tragic mistake — were among the worst and most deadly air raids that the Netherlands suffered during the Second World War. On that day 3, homes were destroyed or severely damaged, along with businesses, 64 offices, 5 churches, 15 schools and 8 hospitals.

The bombing made 12, people homeless, many of them losing everything they had. The survivors took flight. As they did so they saw the most horrific sights, witnessing scenes of inferno. Someone recently said: The wounds inflicted on that terrible Saturday were simply too deep. The sorrow too great. On top of this, in the decades after the war little thought was given to the bombing.

This was most certainly because it was an attack by our allies. Besides which, these were the years of reconstruction. Years of looking forward, not back. More recently, however, the bombing has gained more notice rather than less, which is a good thing.

Now as the group of people who experienced it first-hand is becoming smaller, the stories need to be handed down to the present generation and to future generations. And that is certainly happening. Books have been published. There is a package for primary schools and recently an historic walk through the Bezuidenhout was organised.

Photos with explanatory captions placed around the neighbourhood show just how much the appearance of the area was changed by the bombing. History can be found literally on the streets there. You soon feel a sense of unease looking at pictures of the bombed Bezuidenhout: But it is still going on today.


In the cities of Syria that have been reduced to rubble, in the East Ukraine, and elsewhere in the world. It makes us realize all the more how fortunate we are to be able to live here in peace. And that we must continue to do everything in our power to banish such suffering from the world. Or, to put it in the words of that great philosopher Baruch Spinoza, who spent his final years in The Hague, and whose fundamental ideas about peace and freedom have lost none of their power and relevance more than three centuries later.

Timothy Michael Broas, H. Olexander Horin Ambassador of ukraine, H. General Manager Vincent Pahlplatz speaking about the evening said: At the end of the book The Altruistic Personality, a penetrating study of the motives of rescuers of Jews in nazi Europe, authors Samuel and Pearl Oliner write: Can we do otherwise?

On April 16th, in the village Velp near Arnhem, a statue of a girl holding a doll was dedicated to the memory of those rescuers, amongst them Ria and Bertus van der Kemp, who saved my life.

In May , Ria, a 47 year-old German born mother of an adult son, had to make the life decision to open or close the door to an unknown baby with all the risks such a choice entailed. How much time do you think it took my foster mother to decide, I once asked a primary school class for the first time. Yes, these are the no-time decisions that truly make a difference. And only last year, the nephew of my rescuer, who is now 90 years old, was able to relate the story that characterises him.

He pulled up his sweater and showed me a large copper shield that covered his belly. Unscrewed, it turned out to be a delicate thin container in which he carried litres of milk smuggled from a farm.

He did so week after week for a period of two years. Thus Bertus, an ordinary man, used his talent as coppersmith to keep up my strength and sustain another Jewish girl. On the day of liberation of Velp seventy years ago, he gave his life shielding me from a fire bomb. My wife and I belong to the minority of the Jewish community that survived.

Out of a Jewish population of ,, over , were killed in concentration camps. It was Queen Beatrix who, in a moving speech to the Israeli parliament in , expressed her feeling of shame that despite many acts of brave resistance, no more was done to help the persecuted. The situation in the Netherlands should however be placed in a more general historical context.

The aforementioned study points out that the behaviour of people under cruel occupation witnessing the persecution of a minority in their midst follows a recurrent pattern.

A majority collaborates completely with the persecutors. A minority shows empathy for the persecuted and is even prepared to risk its life to protect them. And the majority. The main difference is made in the classroom.

The experience of having a good compassionate teacher who creates and maintains harmony, who teaches respect for the other at all times, and fosters loving relationships helps the individual to make the fateful no time decision. This should be one of the main concerns of the European Union in the coming years.

Sira, my wife, and I belong to the dwindling number of survivors who have a physical connection to the Second World War and impart our life lessons to the next generation.

This awareness has motivated me to work towards the teaching of compassion in schools. In the Netherlands, during the second week of November, a large number of schools was engaged in lessons and debates introduced by public figures, artists, policemen, politicians, etc. Education through respect has been adopted recently in the Philippines, Burundi, and the Congo. But fortunately, through discussion governed by mutual respect, we are able to diffuse this tension and find a beneficial modus vivendi.

This ability is more strengthened by a quiet revolution that takes place in our midst. It is painfully clear in these turbulent days how vital this form of education is. It is my firm belief that anti-Semitism and other forms of discrimination are a curable disease. But it requires the united efforts of educators across borders, the alliance of interfaith, and intercultural cooperation to contain the spread of hatred and violent.

Different spiritual traditions, including humanism, move closer and closer towards each other.

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This extraordinary hopeful process is evidenced in The Hague by the interspiritual gathering that takes place annually on Prinsjesdag, in the Grote Kerk, hours before the reopening of Parliament. And rescuers forever point the way.

When we were born, the chance of us ever becoming parents and grandparents was nonexistent. But today, we are the proud parents and grandparents of beautiful, joyful children and grandchildren because of the power of compassion. May The All Merciful One grant us the wisdom and courage to be able to draw strength from each other. Meet The talent! Our team of Photographers consists of: Eurojust It does so by coordinating the activities of the relevant national authorities and facilitating the exchange of information and the collection of evidence.

The fight against terrorism is a priority for Eurojust. The EU legal framework regarding terrorism includes two framework decisions criminalising terrorism and terrorismrelated offences, such as public provocation and training. The issue of returning foreign fighters has underlined the relevance of establishing channels that allow efficient cooperation at international and European Union level.

At European Union level, Eurojust monitors national responses, collects and analyses information on the EU, national, and third State legal frameworks, identifies challenges and facilitates the execution of European Arrest Warrants EAW and mutual legal assistance MLA requests.

The objectives of such meetings include, among other things, exchanging information and facilitating and coordinating the execution of MLA requests. Eurojust also participates in and funds joint investigation teams JITs and can request the competent authorities of Member States to establish this key coordination tool. These teams consist of prosecutors, judges and law enforcement personnel who carry out criminal investigations in one or more States and allow sharing and requesting information in a safe and effective framework.

The National Correspondents for Terrorism ensure that Member States abide by their obligations to send information on terrorism matters to Eurojust. The National Correspondents for Terrorism also inform Eurojust of all terrorist activity in their State and provide information on the entire process from interviewing suspects to the indictment stage to the National Members of Eurojust.

Better information sharing is crucial, as relevant information can be used as evidence to secure convictions and should provide a.

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These meetings enable an enhanced exchange of information on best practice and obstacles regarding cross-border terrorism. They also provide overviews of current trends and future challenges.

However, there is also a need to cooperate on a more international level, as terrorism is a global problem. Enlarging the contact point network to include representatives from the Middle East and North Africa is under discussion, given that many African countries have suffered heavy terrorist attacks in recent years and the current conflicts in the Middle East.

Eurojust assists Member States in investigations and prosecutions involving third States; the Eurojust Decision also foresees the posting of Eurojust Liaison Prosecutors to third States. The issue of returning foreign fighters calls for cooperation at European and international level and for the engagement of Eurojust and other relevant organisations. After 16 years to have been located on Noordeinde 15 Steltman Watches moved to a new and larger building on Plaats In the new stylish boutique the particular watch brands of this Hague watch specialists now all have the space to display their brands vision to the public.

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In addition, the new store is just steps away from sister company Steltman Juwelier. In close consultation with Steltman, Heyligers created a store in which the brands are able to bring their brand forward and stand for their image without compromising the main brand: Steltman has a heritage of nearly years old and the service-minded brand DNA that was motivated by founder John Steltman is still the main pillar of its success.

There is also a small selection of jewellery from the collection of Steltman juwelier present. Craftsmanship and workmanship is another pillar where Steltman built, hence the private uurwerkmakersatelier clearly visible behind in the store is located.

The clockmakers of Steltman by most of the padded brands certified to perform maintenance and repairs in house and their work can be admired from the store. Philippe Couvreur, Greffier de la Cour internationale de Justice. Photographie par: Gualtiero Buonamassa. So Peace and Justice came to replace an old feature of the city, and those who are working in the world of international relations will be pleased with this development.

So the City of The Hague is definitely a city of international orientation, a city where these notions of peace and justice are important. Everyone will understand that this image is based on the work of the international institutions, which produce a unique mix of administration of justice and international regulation, like the International Court of Justice of the United Nations and the Permanent Court of Arbitration both in the Peace Palace , the International Criminal Court, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, the Special Tribunal for Lebanon, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and The Hague Conference on Private International Law.

These were the exact words he used in his speech during the centenary celebration of the Peace Palace in It is tempting to continue on the work of the international institutions, but for this article I would like to highlight the layer of activities which one finds underneath the level of official institutions.

Since , academic summer courses on international law - both public law and private law - have been organized in the Peace Palace. These courses bring some students to The Hague for 3 weeks. So, well over They make for an impressive group of alumni. The same can be said about the Institute of Social Studies which has given extensive education and training to many students from the developing world.

At the Institute of Social Studies the students normally stay for an educational program which takes a longer period of time. When the diplomatic conference on the International Criminal Court had to decide. The city is now allowing for a million new headquarters to be built on the corner of the Waalsdorperweg and Alkemadelaan.

The court is a major asset for the further development of The Hague. Staying on the path of the academic institutions, the T. Asser Institute has over nearly 50 years built a name for itself as an interuniversity institute for study and teaching of international law. It is part of the structure of the University of Amsterdam, in the sense that the funding comes from this university.

The same story of international awareness and fame can be attributed to the Clingendael Institute, which is essentially devoted to international relations, and is or should be the diplomatic school of the Netherlands.

The experts of Clingendael Institute are often asked to give their comments on the Dutch radio and TV about international defence matters, energy policy, or the Middle East and so on. Other partners of The Hague Academic Coalition HAC are showing an eagerness to play their distinctive roles in the international arena, like The Hague Institute for the Internationalisation of Law Hill with its innovative legal concepts. The ambitions of The Hague Institute for Global Justice can be seen as becoming a sort of Brookings at the North Sea, and its staff is working hard to deliver high quality services and create a professional profile which does not take the place of other more established institutions.

I think it would be a good idea to make all this more visible, for instance with one official day of the year in full colours, in a location of some importance and a speech looks at the ethics of international justice.

Such an event could well set the agenda for the Legal Capital for the year to come. It would fill a void, which I notice basically every day: The concept of the Legal Capital of the World is founded on the pillars of the institutions, but the open debate, the statements by high level visitors and sparkling intellectual exchanges are too limited. In some way or other we have not yet been able to get this organized. As I said in the beginning, the coat of arms of our City of The Hague mentions Peace and Justice as the central notions, which means that the basis of an important heritage is there.

But we still have to do a good deal of shaping of that heritage in the years to come. Be open to visits by journalists and legal professionals, attract visiting professors, organize public and televised debates, create a structure where public and private partners can meet, are all elements of a more structural approach.

The same goes for being ready to host international negotiations or mediations, which seem to stick to Geneva or to capitals of other countries. It would help undeniably if support would be forthcoming for the cultural side of the efforts in. These are just a few thoughts on how we can improve a quality which is inherently available but needs to be polished. Our world. A connected world. On a daily basis, we make billions of connections.

We are a mobile operator connecting millions of customers across 14 countries. We digitally connect hundreds of millions of people. We facilitate global sharing of knowledge which equals freedom and power. We are in an age of networked intelligence. Where every day, life is rapidly changing, constantly creating new possibilities. We call the Netherlands our home. Here, in Amsterdam, we bring together people, technologies and ideas. To create the digital mobile future together. We are VimpelCom.

A Look Behind the Scenes… Diplomacy at work: Despite this sense of urgency implied by location, a lot of frustration surfaced during the meeting due to political gamesmanship and manoeuvring. The columns put a playful spotlight on the interface between the Dutch and the International Community it hosts. Yes, his musings may appear at times to be mildly provocative at first sight but they are first and foremost playful — with a little irony thrown in here and there… You be the judge!

Worldwide, the trend is clear: So much so, that even the private sector nowadays considers investing in disaster risk reduction to be part of their core business. In other words, they see this no longer as a luxury but as a necessity. Much of the international discussions on disaster risk reduction focuses on rising sea levels, global warming and more extreme weather patterns.

While some parts of the world accept the overwhelming evidence that it is high time to prepare for hitherto unseen emergencies and disasters, other parts of the world stick to a more-of-the-same, business-as-usual approach. Negotiations such as the ones in Sendai are complicated by distrust and opposing fractions and regional power blocks.

Trying to reach an agreement when there is only an agreement to disagree is notoriously difficult… As recent as six months ago, nobody had foreseen these difficulties as it was widely believed that everybody considered the Sendai meeting as a technical and neutral meeting on disaster risk reduction, a topic that everybody recognized as important.

A second problem with these kind of meetings consists of a combination of confusion, time pressure and loss-of-face. Instead of a stand-alone meeting on a neutral and technical topic how to arrange for public-private cooperation, funding and technology transfer for disaster risk reduction the Sendai summit all of a sudden became a station on the route of controversial and heated international summits on climate change, i.

Addis, New York and Paris. Because amid all the disagreement an agreement had to be reached on a framework for disaster risk reduction, a marathon of negotiations started over a period of 36 hours during which smaller groups of 20 countries ironed out the most controversial issues during sessions from 10 pm to 4 am!

The hosts, i. Japan, looked at the confusion on the last day of negotiations and felt that time was slipping away. To avoid loss of face, the Japanese took over the meeting but not after first besieging and berating the delegation of the USA which was seen as a major roadblock to reaching agreement. Eventually, an agreement was reached.

An agreement which was not bad at all. An agreement with which all kinds of tools for disaster risk reduction can be developed and implemented. But the conclusion after Sendai was also this: Do not merely share the final product of these summits with the world but tell them how the agreement was reached, where the pitfalls were and how the problems were overcome.

Tell the world about the many hours, the many stressful moments and the advanced skill levels that are needed to reach an agreement amid disagreement. Consider hiring completely independent chairs for these meetings, international people who are very experienced as crisis managers. Do involve the host-nation as soon as possible in co-determining what the desired impact of the meeting will be. With these suggestions, the world will never wonder what the fuss was all about and will never consider these summits as mini-holidays for well-paid diplomats.

And the benefits for the diplomatic community? They have all distributed videos on Ustream, a broadcasting application tool and one of the many Hungarian startups. Since the establishment of startups as LogMeIn in , Ustream in and Prezi in , Hungary, and especially the city of Budapest, is growing into one of the most important and vibrant startup centres of Europe.

Prezi, an online presentation programme, has over 50 million users worldwide and still attracts Next to its first office in Budapest, which employs over people, it also has an office in San Francisco. Ustream is a platform to share videos and is used by broadcasters all around the world. It has 30 million active users and 80 million people who view Ustream videos worldwide.

LogMeIn, a remote control application for accessing computers, also began its journey in Budapest and has now offices in, among others, Australia, the US, the UK and Ireland as well. These offices employ over 1, people worldwide.

There are several reasons for the fact that Budapest has been growing substantially as a new vibrant centre for startups and creative industries. First of all, there is an abundance of qualified personnel available in Budapest and since the city is located at the heart of Europe, it also attracts foreign talent.

In addition, the Hungarian government supports the startup culture in Hungary and has allocated million euros to back these startup companies over the next six years. A vibrant and innovative startup culture is not only of importance for Hungary, but also for Europe in general; innovation is a great incentive for economic growth.

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The aim of this programme is to connect the startup culture in Amsterdam with the rest of the Netherlands and with Europe in order to create a strong and innovative European startup system.

Here there lies a lot of potential for close European cooperation and the Embassy of Hungary in The Hague is looking forward to contributing to this. Connectivity has been the unremitting pursuit of human society since ancient times. The Silk Road and Maritime Silk Road closely connected Asia and Europe long time ago, on which many travellers, navigators and explorers, as well as camel teams and fleets with different kinds of commodities busied to and fro. Thanks to these two roads, Asia and Europe learned from each other and promoted their respective prosperity through exchanges.

Today, unprecedented interdependence among countries further highlights the importance of connectivity. This Initiative links Asian-Pacific Region and Europe, sponsors for peaceful development, win-win cooperation, openness and inclusiveness.

It is delighted to note that momentum between Asia and Europe for connectivity. In , a threedimensional network of interconnection and communication has been strengthened through Connecting Europe Facility program. Recently, the APEC Connectivity Blueprint has been endorsed in Beijing, which set an vision of achieving a seamless and comprehensively connectivity in At the same time, connectivity is getting an increasingly wide support. The train took Christmas gifts from China to Europe and brought back Spanish red wine, olive oil and other European products, which enriched the New Year menu for the Chinese people.

All of these manifest that the One Belt and One Road Initiative is contributing to the connectivity of culture, personnel and trade among relevant countries, and bringing true benefits to people. China is ready to further expand its opening up and share opportunities of development for mutual benefits, and become as supporter, builder and beneficiary of the One Belt and One Road Initiative together with interested countries.

As long as China and the EU continue their cooperation in infrastructure construction, regulation coordination and personnel exchange, comprehensive connectivity and common market of Asia-Europe will be realized definitely.

It will also deepen the China-EU partnership of peace, growth, reform and civilization. Asian and European countries, like the lights at night, will always be shining and flaming with further promotion of connectivity. Sensing my absorbed meditating mood, my wife, on her arrival at the Schiphol Airport recently, threw out a religious challenge: What sounds like a light-hearted query lead us to a formidable discussion on how I tend to see my tenure in the Netherlands as nothing short of a water pilgrimage.

To make my point on how the Netherlands remained so dry amidst all these water, I offered her a romantic plot. So we were on a joy ride, in a boat, if she were to arrive in Bangladesh, instead of the Netherlands. When my first ever Ambassadorial assignment landed me in the Netherlands in March , I think it also gave me an opportunity to do something immediate and practical about my old obsessions-how could we remain afloat in Bangladesh even if we go under water?

What is the way out? I came to believe that there is a sacredness in Dutch water. It was never a mark of weakness, but of power.

What was their weakness, the Dutch turned it into an overwhelming reservoir of expertise and resilience. When we talk about resilience, the world came to witness, the people of Bangladesh are no less endowed with their ability to bounce back. Among its immediate neighbours, Bangladesh has the highest life expectancy But it remained trapped to its geography. As I make my slow pilgrimage through the watery landscape of the Netherlands, a sense of awe and mystery seems to gather and grow.

The process of my transformation came to a head with my discovery of water being at the front and centre of whatever they do here in the Netherlands. It is next to impossible leaving a gathering of even three to four professionals in the Netherlands without meeting a water expert. It is located on an active sedimentary basin and the intricate network of alluvial rivers that carries an average quantity of 0. More or less like the Netherlands, Bangladesh is also a floodplain.

The altitude normally does not exceed 11 m above the sea level. To make it even more challenging than the Netherlands, Bangladesh houses 57 cross-boundary rivers, of which 54 are shared with India and the remaining three with Myanmar. Bangladesh is the common lower riparian of all these trans-boundary rivers. The combined discharge of water from the GBM rivers is second only to that of the river Amazon. Defending against floods from such a massive network of cross boundary rivers requires a regional framework in the Himalayan basin area which is not there yet.

Hopefully, countries in the Himalayan basin will, someday, take a page from the European networks of cooperation in the water sector to develop a basin wide framework for water cooperation. As amazing as it may sound, some sources suggest that there were primitive flood defences in what is now the Netherlands as far back as BC.

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