Ties that Bind : A History of Franco-Nepali Diplomatic Relations

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While it may appear that Franco-Nepali amity is a fairly recent development, the two countries share a rich history of diplomatic relations. Through archival research and public conferences, Alliance Française of Kathmandu set out to highlight this long-standing relationship with the help of history student Charlie Caron. The resulting public lectures drew a concise and nuanced portrait of the circumstances that have shaped the history of the two superpowers.

BhimsemThapa(1775-1839) et Napoléon Ier (1769-1821)

Bhimsem Thapa (1775-1839) et Napoléon Ier (1769-1821)

France and Nepal have frequently crossed paths – right from the first Newar to the Mallas, from the last Bourbons to Napoleon and ultimately culminating in the establishment of official diplomatic relations in 1949. By the end of the Second World War, Nepal had opened its doors to the world. Nepali Kings and Ministers regularly traveled to France to develop sincere relations between the two countries. Successive French Presidents further bolstered this dynamic cooperation by building technological, military, cultural, scientific or economic alliances.

A History Conference in progress at AF Katmandou

A History Conference in progress at AF Katmandou

With King Mahendra visiting French President Charles de Gaulle in 1966 and the diplomatic trip of French President Mitterrand to Nepal in 1983, the two nations embarked on a new era of enhanced exchanges. French academics have given a new dimension to this relationship by showing an ever-increasing interest in this remarkable country located in the foothills of the Himalayas. Today, the news provides ample evidence of the close-knit ties that exist between Paris and Kathmandu notably with the 2019 visit of Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli who recently met his French Counterpart, Edouard Philippe.

Charlie Caron conducting a History Conference at AF Katmandou

Charlie Caron conducting a History Conference at AF Katmandou

Through these conferences, AF Kathmandu took great pride in highlighting the fact that despite the 8,000 km which separate the two countries, France and Nepal are really not that far apart!

Charlie Caron

Historical Projects Officer, Alliance Française de Katmandou

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Rédaction

Directeur de publication : Délégation Générale de la Fondation Alliance Française en Inde et au Népal

Rédacteur en chef : Laurent Elisio Bordier

Rédacteur/Coordinateur national : Siddharth Bhatt

Rédacteurs, contributeurs : Guillaume, Abhirami, Alexandre, Chintan, Cléa, David, Eleonore, Elie, Kanika, Karine, Nita, Thomas, Malvika, Marie-Joëlle, Meera, Mayuri, Mitushi, Alice, Prutha, Romain, Ritika, Manas, Supriya ...