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Daily Archives: June 18, 2007

China supports Abbas and calls for Palestinian talks

Image  China yesterday expressed its support for the Palestinian Authority and appealed for the “Palestinian factions” to put an end to their conflicts.
“The Chinese government respects the legitimate status of President Abbas and the Palestinian National Authority,” foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang said.
China “strongly calls for Palestinian factions to end conflicts and solve their concerns through dialogue and consultations so as to safeguard the fundamental interests of the Palestinian people,” he said in a statement on the ministry website.
The European Union and the United States have already expressed their support for Abbas.

EU to resume aid to Palestine

The European Union is to resume direct financial aid to the Palestinian Authority for the first time in 18 months in a bid to prop up the new government in the West Bank.
Javier Solana, the bloc's foreign policy chief, said yesterday that the move would send a message of support to the embattled President, Mahmoud Abbas, of the secular Fatah party, who sacked Hamas after the Islamists' military takeover of the Gaza Strip.
Mr Abbas dismissed the fundamentalists' leader Ismail Haniya as Prime Minister and appointed Salam Fayad, a political moderate, to the post at the end of last week. Hamas, however, has denounced his decision as a "coup" and announced that it would not recognise the administration.
The West has boycotted the Palestinian Government since Hamas was elected to power in January last year. The Islamists have rejected calls to recognise neighbouring Israel's right to exist, renounce terrorism, and acknowledge previously signed interim peace agreements.
Mr Solana announced the intention to end the boycott as he spoke to reporters before a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Luxembourg.
“There will be a direct relationship, economically also with the Government," he said. “There will be a part of the money that will be direct."
The EU foreign policy chief added that the bloc had confidence in Mr Fayyad, the US-trained economist and former Palestinian Finance Minister, to handle the funds.