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India, Palestine sign six agreements

India, Palestine sign six agreements

Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas (R) and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi attend a joint press conference after their meeting in the West Bank city of Ramallah on February 10, 2018.

"We count on India's role as an global force of great prestige and weight", Abbas said, noting "its rising power at the strategic and economic levels" that could "contribute to the achievement of a just peace in our region".

He said hopes for the return of peace in this region. Only diplomacy and far-sightedness can set free from violence and baggage of the past. "We know that it's not easy, but we should keep striving because a lot is at stake", he said in a joint press conference with Abbas.

Prime Minister Modi was conferred Saudi Arabia's highest civilian award the King Abdulaziz Sash when he visited the Kingdom in April 2016. He said India remains "committed to Palestinian national rights", but stopped short of offering support for Abbas' political agenda. While his transit from Jordan to Palestine, PM Modi was chauffered in Royal Jordanian helecopters which were accompanied by Israel choppers as well. "That's why I am here, in Ramallah", Mr. Modi said at the administrative headquarters of the Palestinian Authority. This was followed by Netanyahu being feted in Delhi and a major effort to increase defence and trade ties between the two nations. Modi's visit to Palestine comes amid heightened tensions in the region after USA recognised as the capital of The unilateral United States decision to declare as the capital of was challenged at the where 128 nations, including India, voted to turn down the move as "null and void".

Abbas accorded a red carpet welcome to Modi, the first Indian PM to make an official visit to Palestine.




After bilateral talks, the two sides signed six agreements worth around $50 million, including one for setting up a $30 million super speciality hospital in Beit Sahur. Some important agreements are also likely to be signed during the visit aimed to strengthen the bonds of friendship between both the nation.

Speaking after bilateral talks with Mr. Modi, Mr Abbas said, "I would like to reaffirm our commitment to political actions to meet our national goals of freedom and independence, according to the two-state solution on the 1967 borders and the resolutions of the worldwide legitimacy". Modi walked the diplomatic tightrope in that region - he did not talk of the two-state solution nor was there a joint statement.

Even as Modi dramatically tightens India's ties with Israel, New Delhi has continued its longstanding support of the Palestinians in global forums.

"We want to see Palestine and Israel living in peace and security", Abbas added.

The prime minister thanked President Abbas for the recognition. "India and Palestine's historic relations have stood the test of time". He emphasized the importance of diplomacy and far-sightedness, and lauded the Palestinian people's courage, which he said was exemplary.


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