Palestine President accorded reception at Rashtrapati Bhawan

India reaffirms support for Palestinian cause; hopes to see 'sovereign, independent, united Palestine'

"I have reaffirmed our position on this to President Abbas during our conversation today", Modi said in his remarks to the press with Abbas by his side following their dialogue. The two leaders reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations, regional and global issues.

Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's much-awaited Israel visit, India on Tuesday assured visiting Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas its "unwavering support" to the Palestinian cause and called for a two-state formula to bring peace in the Middle East.

The two sides also signed five pacts, including cooperation in health, IT, agriculture and youth affairs. "India is undertaking project assistance for a flagship techno-park project in Ramallah", he said. But this gift diplomacy also signals that Palestine wants a plausible closer ties with India.

"We look forward to the Palestinian people participating in large numbers during the International Day of Yoga celebrations next month", he added.

"Our nation marking 69 years of the Nakba, our national catastrophe, is symbolized in our exile and the systematic denial of our rights", Erekat, the secretary general of the Palestine Liberation Organization Executive Committee, said in a statement.

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Last week, Vladimir Putin met with his Palestinian counterpart Mahmoud Abbas in Sochi, who once again stated that it is impossible to solve the Palestinian issue without Russia's meaningful participation. Some of the significant ones are on visa exemption on diplomatic and official passports, IT and electronics and agricultural cooperation among others.

"We believe that our people acquiring their freedom and independence will deny the extremists leverage and help consolidate the foundations of security and peace in our region", Abbas said.

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

On day two, he will meet with Modi, his Indian counterpart Pranab Mukherjee and Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj after a ceremonial welcome at the presidential palace and laying a wreath at Mahatma Gandhi's memorial. He had held substantive meetings with Prime Minister Modi on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in NY in September 2015.

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