Abbas:We are always Ready for Negotiations

Abbas:We are always Ready for Negotiations

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The Gaza Post|The News of Palestine-Ramaalh

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas announced during a joint press conference with visiting Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi that Palestinians seek a two-state solution “based on the 1967 borders and international resolution” with Jerusalem as a capital for the Palestinian state .

It was the first visit of an Indian prime minister to Ramallah in 30 years who arrived to Ramallah on a Jordanian army helicopter from Amman, where he was received by his Palestinian counterpart Rami Hamdallah.

Abbas acknowledged India’s role in the peace process saying he was counting on India’s support for multi-country sponsorship of future Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.

The President said Palestine is always ready to engage in negotiations to achieve its goal of an independent state. He asked India to facilitate the peace process with Israel.

“We rely on India’s role as an international voice of great standing and weigh through its historical role in the Non-Aligned Movement and in all international forum and its increasingly growing power on the strategic and economic levels, in a way that is conducive to just and desired peace in our region,” said President Abbas.

Speaking about the talks between the two leaders, Abbas told the press they discussed “bringing the political process out of the deadlock due to the continued Israeli occupation of our land and the political impasse following Trump’s decision on Jerusalem and the refugees.”

Modi visited the mausoleum of Yasser Arafat, Modi hailed the late president as “one of the greatest leaders in history.”

He then headed to Arafat Museum and wrote in the guest book saying that Arafat was a “special friend of India and his contribution to Palestine is historical. It was an unforgettable moment for me to visit a museum dedicated to him. I once again pay tribute to Abu Ammar.”

President Abbas conferred the “Grand Collar of the State of Palestine” on Prime Minister Modi, recognizing his key contribution to promote ties between India and Palestine.

Abbas said he had “fruitful and constructive” talks with Prime Minister Modi and he updated the Indian leader on the overall developing situation in Palestine and in the region.

PM Modi assured President Abbas that India is committed to the Palestinian people’s interests.

“The support for Palestinian interests in our foreign policy has always been a priority – continuous and steadfast,” Modi said.

“Friendship between India and Palestine has stood the test of time. The people of Palestine have shown remarkable courage in the face of several challenges. India will always support Palestine’s development journey,” Modi said, adding that India is hopeful of peace and stability in the region.

Both governments of Palestine and India signed, in the presence of Abbas and Modi, six memorandums of understanding (MoUs) worth around $50 million that include setting up of a $30 million super specialty hospital in Beit Sahur.

An MoU was signed for construction of the India-Palestine centre for empowering women called “Turathi” at a cost of $5 million. Another MoU was signed for setting up of a new National Printing Press at Ramallah at a cost of $5 million. Two MoUs were also signed for the construction of two schools at Tamoon village in Tubas governorate and Muthalth al-Shuhada village respectively. A sixth MoU was signed for the construction of an additional floor at Jawahar Lal Nehru School for Boys at Abu Dees.

Modi said that India was proud to help the Palestinians build state institutions and support the government’s budget and projects. He also expressed hope that peace in the region would be achieved quickly through dialogue and understanding.

“We hope for peace and stability in Palestine. We believe a permanent solution is possible with dialogue. Only diplomacy and farsightedness can set free from violence and baggage of the past. We know it is not easy but we need to keep trying as a lot is at stake,” Modi concluded.

Source:Al sharq Al Awsat

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