India assures its stand on Palestine is 'independent'

Paola Ditto
Dicembre 8, 2017

In a significant diplomatic move PM Narendra Modi is planning to visit Palestine in near future amid India's refusal to toe US President Donald Trump's decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Earlier in the day, spokesperson for the External Affairs Ministry Raveesh Kumar said: "India's position on Palestine is independent and consistent".

Even as the political situation in the middle-east is getting more volatile after the U.S. recognised Jerusalem as Israel's Capital, Palestinian Ambassador in New Delhi Adnan Abu Alhaijaa reportedly told a TV channel that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Palestine but did not elaborate when the visit will take place.

He clarified that the state of Palestine without east Jerusalem will not exist and will not be accepted.

"Canada is a steadfast ally and friend of Israel and friend to the Palestinian people".

During his visit to Ramallah in October 2015, the then President Pranab Mukherjee had reiterated India's "principled support" to Palestinians' demand for East Jerusalem to be the capital of the State of Palestine.

Israel views Jerusalem as its undivided capital.

India, the first non-Arab country to recognise Palestinian statehood in 1988, has adopted a guarded position compared to much of the global community that has come out unequivocally against President Donald Trump's decision to shift the American embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. The MEA had also organised a seminar espousing India's support to the Palestinian issue on the same day.

New Delhi is now set to host Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who is likely to visit India next month.

The party held the United States responsible for scuttling any possible peace negotiations between Israel and Palestine.

But India made sure that its ties with the Arab world remain unaffected by hosting Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas and reaffirming its commitment to the Palestinian cause.

India with its historical relations with the Ottoman and Persian empires, Iraq and the Gulf, besides Egypt, Morocco and other North African states, have navigated complexities of the Arab World in a rather smooth fashion.

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