• Issue: September 2016
  • Designer: Miri Nistor
  • Stamp Size: 30 mm x 40 mm
  • Plate no.: 1031
  • Security mark: Microtext
  • Sheet of 15 stamps, Tabs: 5
  • Printers: Joh. Enschede, The Netherlands
  • Method of printing: Offset

Israel and Bulgaria share a strong, unique historical bond.

The joint efforts of the Bulgarian people, the Church and the Parliament saved the Bulgarian Jewish community during WWII, adding an exceptional human dimension to the diplomatic relations between the two countries.

This bond has served as the foundation to forming ties between the two governments and peoples in many diverse realms, such as economics, science and academia, culture, society and more. The historic joint stamp depicts the migration of storks between Bulgaria and Israel. The common journey of the two nations has flourished for over 25 years, since the renewal of diplomatic relations between them. Thus began ongoing collaborations and the realization of hopes for future prosperity and peace for all nations in the region.

Irit Lillian
Ambassador of the State of Israel in Bulgaria

Bird Migration

The Republic of Bulgaria lies on the Balkan Peninsula in Eastern Europe. The State of Israel is situated on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea, in the heart of the Middle East.

Some 500 million birds migrate through Israel's skies twice a year, thus making it a significant global crossroads, especially for the birds of Western Asia and Eastern Europe in general, and of Bulgaria in particular. The White Stork is one of 280 bird species that migrate over Israel. These birds, which also nest in Bulgaria, pass over Israel as they make their way to Africa, sometimes as far south as the South African city of Cape Town. The stork is connected to human habitats and in Europe it signifies the arrival of spring and symbolizes hope. Some 600,000 storks migrate through Israel's skies twice a year, among them probably all of Bulgaria's storks. Thus, the governments of Israel and Bulgaria chose the

stork to appear on the joint-issue stamp as a symbol of peace and coexistence and as a sign that migrating birds know no borders.

Israeli scientists monitor the migrating birds, aided by motorized gliders, birdwatchers, radar and GPS transmitters tracked via satellite. Thus, the stamp features a stork transmitting to space. The sky is not the limit, but rather a habitat for storks migrating from Bulgaria to Africa via Israel.

Prof. Yossi Leshem
Director of the International Center for the Study of Bird Migration,
Tel Aviv University and the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI)

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Israel-Bulgaria Joint Issue, Bird Migration