India inks three MoUs with Palestine, pledges $10 m

New Delhi (TIP): Reiterating New Delhi’s support for Palestine’s bid for full and equal membership of the United Nations, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh announced that India would contribute $10 million to Palestine’s budget for this year to help address its financial requirements.

India and Palestine also signed three MoUs in the areas of information and communication technology, vocational training and education after wide-ranging talks between the PM and Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas here. The two leaders exchanged views on regional issues, particularly the developments in the West Asian and the Gulf region. In the context of the ongoing war in Syria, they agreed 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.

“Support for the Palestinian cause has been a cornerstone of India’s foreign policy,” the PM said in a media statement issued after his meeting with the Palestine leader. He said he had reassured Abbas of 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 recognised borders, side by side and at peace with Israel.

The PM pointed out that India had also played an active role in supporting the efforts of Palestine to secure full membership status at UNESCO. “We also look forward to early resumption of peace talks between the Palestinians and Israelis leading to a comprehensive resolution between the two sides,” he said. Manmohan Singh said India would continue to support the development and nation-building efforts of Palestine. The MoUs signed today were indicative of India’s commitment to contribute in the areas of information and communication technology, vocational training and education.

Noting that the Palestine leader would inaugurate the new Palestinian Embassy building built in New Delhi with India’s support, the PM said the building was a symbol of the enduring friendship between the two countries and its people. Abbas, who was accorded a ceremonial welcome at the forecourt of the Rashtrapati Bhawan in the morning, described India as a true friend of Palestine.

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