DAAD country director hosts annual dinner
The new country director of DAAD, the German government organization for academic exchange, Inge Iqbal, hosted the annual dinner on the lawns of the ‘German House’ in Islamabad, where she introduced the new head of the embassy’s culture and press section, Christine Rosenberger, and officials from DAAD headquarters in Berlin.
The event was attended by members of the alumni of the over 700 Pakistanis who were DAAD fellowship recipients. Some of this year’s about 45 new recipients of funding for their projects also attended, and there were guests from German universities and the Higher Education Commission (HEC), the main collaborative partner in Pakistan.
“Most participants in the various DAAD exchange programmes go to Germany, but German scholars also come to Pakistan, including university teachers in German language in Pakistan,” explained the DAAD representative.
In their speeches, the DAAD and embassy representatives underlined the good cooperation that exists in higher education and research between the two countries, and since they both are new in their posts they also drew attention to how well they had been received in Pakistan.
Inge Iqbal said that Pakistan was not new to her, as she had both professional and family ties to the country. She said she looked forward to the coming two years of appointment, adding that she hoped it would be extended so she could stay longer.
Dr Shahzad Irfan from the physiology department of the GC University of Faisalabad said that he was grateful for the opportunity he had to spend over three years studying veterinary science and physiology in Germany.
Eiffel Scholarship Programme announced
Applications for the Eiffel Scholarship Programme are now available online until Jan 11, 2019, the French embassy has announced.
The programme recruits exceptional graduate and postgraduate students in the fields of economics and management, engineering sciences and law and political sciences at the masters level, and science, economics and management, and law and political sciences for the doctorate/PhD level.
Ambassador of France Dr Marc Barety said: “The French-Pakistan bilateral relations are deep rooted in the past. France recognized Pakistan as early as 1947. Our present relationship is not yet meeting all our expectations as there is great potential for the future and we are working to realise that potential together.”
André de Bussy, counsellor for cooperation and cultural affairs, said: “Our cooperation is built on cultural exchanges with our Alliance Française network, our forum of discussions on societal realities and our programmes of higher education. In particular the Eiffel programme is designed to attract the best Pakistani students to masters and Doctorate/PhD level programmes in France.”
Italian national unity day marked
Ambassador Stefano Pontecorvo and newly arrived defence attaché Col Guiseppe Potenza welcomed guests at the Marriott Hotel to mark the Italian National Unity and Armed Forces Day.
The chief guest at the event was Air Marshal Mohammad Haseeb Paracha, the deputy chief of army staff personnel in the Pakistan Air Force.
The day is marked in commemoration of the victory of Italy, as a member of the Allies, over Austria-Hungary in 1918 at the end of World War I. Italy entered WWI in 1915 and fought a series of battles to defend its border.
On Nov 3, 1918, Austria-Hungary asked for armistice, signed in Padua, which entered into force on Nov 4, 1918, ending the war between the two countries and WWI.
Since 1922, the day has been marked as a national holiday and it forms an important element of the construction of Italian national identity. In Italy, in addition to various commemorative events countrywide, the main event is held atAltare della Patriain Rome where theTomb of the Unknown Soldieris marked with an eternal flame.
At the dinner, Pakistani and Italian food was served, and conversation was lively, with music in the background, making for a pleasant event.
Published in Dawn, November 12th, 2018