PM Narendra Modi calls for ‘independent’ Palestine soon, skips mention of ‘united, viable’

In a major departure from the past, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said India hoped for “an early realisation of a sovereign and independent state of Palestine”, dropping any mention of a “united” and “viable” Palestine.

In a major departure from the past, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said India hoped for “an early realisation of a sovereign and independent state of Palestine”, dropping any mention of a “united” and “viable” Palestine. He also did not mention East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine, nor did he spell out “the two-state solution” — a departure he had made earlier, in May last year.
His carefully calibrated omission of a “united” and “viable” Palestine will be perceived as a radical change in India’s position, maintained for several decades. This was the first ever visit by an Indian prime minister to Palestine, and Modi and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas were seen embracing each other several times on Saturday. However, unlike his standalone bilateral visit to Israel, when there was a joint statement, there was no joint statement with Palestine, signalling lack of convergence on key issues.

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