Prime Minister Narendra Modi will begin his two-nation tour of Germany and Israel on Tuesday. The tour is historic marked by its unprecedented nature because none of the previous prime ministers has visited Israel owing to the complex Arab-Jew conflict that surfaced itself ever since the inception of the State of Israel in 1948.
Remarking about the conflicting relationship between Palestine and Israel, PM Modi, on Monday said, “India believes in a two-state solution in which both Israel and a future Palestinian state coexist peacefully.” The Prime Minister supported all efforts to find an acceptable solution to all the pending issues, ‘including Jerusalem’. “A final-status agreement should respect the sentiments and address demands of all affected parties,” said Modi.
In contrast to the nature of Israel visits of several other world leaders in the past, Modi will not be visiting Ramallah, the seat of Palestinian authority to meet Palestinian leaders.
In response to a question whether India will move its embassy in Tel Aviv, Israel’s second largest city and the de facto commercial capital, Modi replied, “I assume the question refers to our embassy in Tel Aviv. We will take a decision on that after both sides have come to an agreement on Jerusalem.”
Asked whether India would take a more pro-Israel posture in the UN, Modi said India’s positions at the UN are based on the merit of specific issues and driven by the country’s core values and principles. “We remain engaged with all our partners, including Israel, in finding optimal outcomes at the UN and other multilateral fora that reflect our commonly shared priorities and concerns. India is not in favour of singling out any country at the UN,” the prime minister added.
Asked whether India still considers itself unaligned with either the West or the East, Modi said, “We believe in the philosophy of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam,’ which means ‘the world is one family.’ We want to engage constructively with both the East and the West.”