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PM Narendra Modi to visit Jerusalem, says Palestine envoy

08 December 2017

In the wake of the United States under the Trump Administration recognising Jerusalem as Israel's Capital and planning to move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, India on Thursday made it clear that it had no such intention of following suit.

Over the past few months, India has been studiously avoiding mention of East Jerusalem in Palestine-related statements. rime Minister Narendra Modi did not refer to East Jerusalem during his high-on-optics Israel visit this summer. He however did not answer if India would shift its embassy to Jerusalem in future.

India stopped calling for East Jerusalem to be the capital of Palestine this year. The government though avoided a direct criticism of the United States president's announcement.

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

Participating in a discussion on the channel, Alhaijaa said India has been supportive of the Palestinian cause and the two-state solution. Observers see this as a clear indication that the Indian embassy will continue to remain located in Tel Aviv which is recognised by nearly all countries as Israel's Capital. In the letter on the occasion of Palestine Solidarity Day, Modi reiterated India's "steadfast support" to the Palestinian cause while recalling India's development assistance to Palestine. They were supporting the Israeli issue.

India enjoys close ties with both Israel and Palestine.

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Similar view were expressed when Modi visited Israel in July. The Arab world will obviously keep a close eye on the visit.

The party demanded that the "Modi government should come out strongly, disapproving of the U.S. action, as it goes against India's long-standing commitment to the Palestinian cause".

The US announcement has come at a time when India is gearing up for a high-profile visit by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to this country in January, marking the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations.

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PM Narendra Modi to visit Jerusalem, says Palestine envoy