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Arab League’s Afifi: India’s Position on Supporting Palestinian Cause ‘Has not Changed’ | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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India’s Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj smiles while addressing the India Africa business forum in New Delhi, India, October 28, 2015. REUTERS/Anindito Mukherjee/Files

Cairo- Arab League Chief Ahmed Aboul Gheit and Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj agreed on the importance of strengthening cooperation between Arab states and India in political, economic and cultural fields.

In this context, AL Secretary-General Aboul Gheit stressed that the relationship between Arab countries and India two sides in the light of the great and distinguished balance of historical ties and their common interests and the priority accorded by the Arab side to this relationship.

The AL looked forward to the continuation of India’s strong support for Arab issues, especially the Palestinian cause. This was the focus of the message Secretary-General Aboul Gheit recently relayed to India’s Swaraj following the visit of the Indian Prime Minister to Israel and his visit to occupied Palestinian territories.

AL spokesman Mahmud Afifi pointed out that Aboul Gheit explained to Swaraj that Arabs expect the current Indian government to affirm its clear and public support for a two-state solution and the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, foremost of which is their right to establish its independent state.

He stressed the need to urge Israel, which enjoys good relations with India, to return to negotiations with Palestinians, and not to overlook Israel’s negative behavior in failing to abide by internationally-recognized resolutions.

Afifi noted that the Indian minister referred her country’s full understanding of the Arab position and that her country’s relations with Israel would not be at the expense of its important and multidimensional relations with Arab countries, pointing out that India’s position on supporting the Palestinian cause “has not changed.”