Israeli expert gets highest Chinese Honor

Thursday, September 21, 2006 |  by Staff Writer
Pride for Israel: The leadership of Shinjiang Province in western China has decided to bestow the “Mountain of the Sky” award upon an Israeli agriculture expert.

The prestigious honor will be given to Yigal Cohen, an expert in vegetables and field crops, who was sent to China by Mashav, the Foreign Ministry’s Center for International Cooperation to head the Western China Project where he trains local farmers to grow better crops. In the past, Cohen was also sent to a similar mission in Uzbekistan. Cohen heads a demonstration center where farmers from all around the region come to learn about innovative growing and watering techniques.

The “Mountain of the Sky Award” is the highest excellence award that is given to foreign experts that have given an extraordinary contribution to the development of the province. The Shinjiang Province is the largest in China and it spreads over a one-sixth of China’s landmass. The province has a majority of Muslims because it is located in the western part of the country near the countries of Central Asia.

Cohen will receive the award, in a ceremony which will take place next week in the capital of the province, from the Governor and the leadership.

This award given to Cohen is the second time an Israeli has received such an honor in China. In 2004, it was Lior Yaron, an expert in dairy farming, who received the “Great Wall Award” for heading a project near Beijing, where the milk output of the farm was tripled.

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