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September 101, 2012 (TSR) – Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s Media Statement during the State Visit of President of Palestine to India:
Your Excellency, President Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian National Authority,
Ladies and Gentlemen of the Media,
“It is an honour for me to welcome President Mahmoud Abbas on his State Visit to India. He is no stranger to India and, indeed, we regard him as a very special friend.
President Abbas and I have held useful discussions aimed at further expanding and strengthening the India-Palestine partnership, which is rooted in history and flows from our national ethos.
Support for the Palestinian cause has been a cornerstone of India’s foreign policy. During our meeting, I reiterated India’s firm support for the struggle of the Palestinian people to achieve a sovereign, independent, viable and united state of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital, living within secure and recognized borders, side by side and at peace with Israel.
India had played an active role in supporting the efforts of the State of Palestine to secure full member status at UNESCO. We will continue to support Palestine’s bid for full and equal membership of the United Nations.
We also look forward to early resumption of peace talks between the Palestinians and Israelis leading to a comprehensive resolution between the two sides.
Bilaterally, India will continue to support the development and nation-building efforts of Palestine. The MOUs signed today are indicative of our commitment to contribute in the areas of Information & Communication Technology, vocational training and education.
The Government of India will also contribute US Dollar 10 million to Palestine’s budget for this year to help address its financial requirements.
Later today, President Mahmoud Abbas will inaugurate the new Palestinian Embassy building, which has been built with Indian support. The building is a symbol of the enduring friendship between our two countries and our two peoples.
President Abbas and I also exchanged views on regional developments, particularly the developments in the West Asian and the Gulf region. There is a great degree of similarity in our views. We both agree that the developments in the region must be addressed through political dialogue and peaceful means without recourse to violence and outside interference, while taking into account the legitimate aspirations of all people.
I look forward to working together with President Mahmoud Abbas to further carry forward our very special bilateral relations.
I now invite President Abbas to make his remarks.
On Sunday, the official press release from the Government of India came out with a bang:
“India strongly supported the Palestinian application for membership of UN in 2011 and it supported Palestine in gaining membership in UNESCO in October 2011.”
“India’s empathy with the Palestinian cause and its friendship with the people of Palestine is an integral part our foreign policy. It has extended its consistent and unwavering support to the Palestinian issue.”
India strongly expressed support of a negotiated solution resulting in a sovereign, independent, viable and united State of Palestine living within secure and recognized borders, side by side at peace with Israel.
India also supports Israel’s withdrawal to pre-1967 borders, along with recognition of Israel and the establishment of the State of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital, called for an end to illegal Israeli settlements and welcomed ‘direct talks’ between Palestinians and Israelis.
Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas arrived in India on Monday to review bilateral relations and the Peace Process in the Middle East. He was was accompanied by a delegation of PLO Executive Committee Member Saeb Erekat, Presidential Advisor Nabil Abu Rudeineh, and other key official.
The visit provided an opportunity to review regional and international issues of common concern and in particular the current political situation in West Asia.
The PLO visit included a meeting with Indian President, Pranab Mukherjee, Delegation level talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh by Vice President Hamid Ansari and External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna.
President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday met with Indian External Affairs Minister S. M. Krishna at the Council of Ministers of India headquarters in India’s capital New Delhi? and discussed bilateral relations and the peace process in the Middle East.
The two sides signed Memorandums of Understanding to collaborate in the Field of information and communication technology, expand vocational training and build schools in Palestine.
During dinner with President Mukherjee following talks held in the presence of Indian Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, Abbas reiterated his sincere commitment to achieve peace and stability in the region, in accordance with the vision of the two-state solution; the establishment of an independent democratic Palestinian State with East Jerusalem as its capital and within the 1967 borders.
Abbas pointed out that he held very important talks with Singh, which included an in-depth exchange of views on various bilateral and regional issues, a briefing on the peace process, and the latest developments in Palestine.
He briefed Mukherjee on the constant suffering of the Palestinians as a result to the ongoing Israeli occupation since 1967 that denies Palestinians their freedom and independence.
“Recently we have witnessed an acceleration of Israeli settlement activities that aims to change the demographic and geographic nature of Palestine, especially in and around occupied East Jerusalem, the exploitation of our natural resources, and the denial of our people’s potential economic development in all aspects,” he said.
Abbas inaugurated the new Palestinian embassy building in New Delhi, for which he laid cornerstone when he visited India in August 7, 2008, in the presence of Singh.
He expressed appreciation to India for its solid commitment and relentless efforts to promote the Palestinian cause at all international forums.
Abbas congratulated Mukherjee on his election as President of India, wishing him success, health and great achievements.
President Mahmoud Abbas Tuesday thanked the Indian President Pranab Mukherjee for India’s economic and technical assistance, which included training hundreds of Palestinians. He also extended invitation to Mukherjee to visit Palestine.
Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon called on Israel to lift strict procedures imposed on the Palestinian people, Monday said a press release by the Permanent Observer mission of Palestine to the UN in Geneva on.
He said, in a speech at the 21st session of the Human Rights Council, “Extreme poverty is in the interest of no one but extremist groups.”
Ban expressed concern over Israel’s ongoing disrespect of Palestinians fundamental rights, such as, right to self-determination and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state within 1967 borders.
He spoke of the living conditions in the Gaza Strip and the status of human rights under the constant Israeli military airstrikes.
The Mission of Palestine pointed out that the seventh article ‘Human Rights Condition in the Occupied Palestinian Territory’ will be discussed on September 24, and will include topics such as Palestinian prisoners and detainees, Israeli settlements, Jerusalem, the Apartheid Wall and the blockade on Gaza.
The release said this project will strengthen the water pressure in the entire network in that area and thus increase the supply of water to all Birzeit citizens.
Matsuura emphasized Japan’s firm commitment of supporting Palestinian people from human security perspective as well as the importance of implementing social and economic development projects needed for Palestinian communities.
The signing ceremony of the project, funded by the Government of Japan through Japan’s Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects (GGP), was held in the Representative Office of Japan to PA in Ramallah, and attended by Special Advisor to the Minister of State and Head of Aid Management and Coordination Directorate in (MoPAD) Estephan Salameh.
Since 1993, Japan has provided more than $1.25 billion to Palestinians, including its assistance through GGP to more than 320 projects with its total amount of about $23 million. GGP projects have been formulated in collaboration with the Palestinian Authority through MoPAD since 2010.