India supports united, sovereign Palestine: PM Modi

Palestinian demonstrators run as Israeli security forces fire tear gas toward them following a protest to mark Land Day in the village of Madama south of Nablus in the West Bank

Palestinian demonstrators run as Israeli security forces fire tear gas toward them following a protest to mark Land Day in the village of Madama south of Nablus in the West Bank

Also on Monday, the US's new - and controversial - Israeli ambassador, David Friedman, arrived in Israel to take up his post, days ahead of a visit by U.S. president Donald Trump.

In a letter Monday, the 103 signatories said they welcomed the visit but were concerned about the president's plan to facilitate talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, citing payments by the PA to convicted terrorists.

Apart from extending the political support to the Palestinian cause, India continues to support developmental projects in Palestine by extending technical and financial assistance.

For India, its traditionally strident support of Palestine - it launched full-fledged diplomatic ties with Israel only in 1992 - is now an encumbrance.

The visiting President will also call on Mukherjee and meet Vice President Hamid Ansari.

"We agreed that the challenges in West Asia must be addressed through sustained political dialogue and peaceful means", he said.

Israel, however, has consistently rejected the right of return viewing it as an existential threat to the Jewish state while also never recognising its historic role in creating the refugee crisis.

Erekat was referring to the day's commemorations by Palestinian communities for the "Nakba", for "catastrophe" of the founding of Israel and the dispersion of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homes.

Mr. Abbas went on to thank India for contributing to capacity-building in the field of information technology in Palestinian territories.

"At the bilateral level, India is committed to be a useful development partner of Palestine".

Abbas arrived here on Sunday on a four-day visit to India.

The Day of Catastrophe is officially marked every year on May 15, but the occasion this year coincides with a hunger strike being observed by more than 1,600 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails.

Abbas also condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and voiced support for all regional and global efforts to fight this menace. "The agreements concluded today are reaffirmation of our intent to strengthen cooperation in this direction", Modi said.

In October 2015, India has announced grant of United States dollars 12 million for setting up the park with payment of USD 3 million each on half-yearly basis for 2 years.

The Palestinian leader will this evening attend a function at the India Islamic Cultural Centre in New Delhi.

A statement issued by the Palestinian prisoners committee said the Israeli government is responsible for leading the prisoners along a "tragic and disastrous road", and putting hunger strikers in imminent danger by taking "a criminal stance regarding the just demands of prisoners", according to Maan.

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