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    30-Sep-2018

Safadi raises regional issues, cooperation on sidelines of UN meeting

 

The Jordan Times

 

AMMAN — Minister of Foreign and Expatriates Affairs Ayman Safadi held numerous meetings with his counterparts on the sidelines of the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly in New York.
 
The agenda of the meetings focused on bilateral relations, the Palestinian issue, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East and efforts to reach a political solution to the Syrian crisis, a Foreign Ministry statement said.
 
In a meeting with Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim Jaafari, Safadi stressed Jordan’s support for Iraq in the reconstruction efforts and keenness to strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries. The two top diplomats agreed to continue communication to discuss practical steps to increase the pace of cooperation.
 
During a meeting on Friday with members of the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee, a policy-level meeting for development assistance to the Palestinian people, Safadi underlined that ending the Israeli occupation and realising the Palestinian people’s rights to freedom and a sovereign state on the basis of the two-state solution, is the only means to reach a comprehensive peace in the Middle East. 
 
He also stressed the need to end the humanitarian catastrophe in besieged Gaza and provide the enclave with its basic needs.
 
The minister voiced Jordan’s full support for the Palestinian reconciliation efforts represented by the Palestinian Authority, underlining important Egyptian efforts in this regard, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.
 
The minister also met his Paraguayan counterpart Luis Alberto Castiglioni and expressed appreciation for his country’s decision to move back the headquarters of its embassy from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv.
 
At a meeting on Syria, Safadi said joint international efforts are needed to find a political solution that guarantees the unity of the neighbouring Arab country.
 
He also warned against the consequences of insufficient financial support to Jordan, which hosts more than 1.3 million Syrian refugees.
 
The minister took part in a meeting called for by Jordan, the US, Egypt and Gulf Cooperation Council states to discuss new US ideas of dealing with regional challenges.
 
He also met with Arab League Secretary General Ahmed Aboul Gheit over ways to boost joint Arab solidarity. And Safadi met with his Algerian counterpart Abdul Qader Msahel, in which both diplomats voiced eagerness to step up collaboration and coordination between their respective countries.
 
Safadi met with international representatives on Friday as well during a Ministerial Meeting in New York, with the aim of mobilising financial and political support for UNRWA.
 
The ministerial meeting raised a remarkable $122 million, with Kuwait, the European Union, Germany, Norway, France, Belgium and Ireland announcing additional funding commitments, according to UNRWA.org. 
 
The event was attended by ministers and senior officials from a total of 34 member states and organisations, including the League of Arab States, the Organisation for Islamic Cooperation and the Islamic Development Bank. 
 
UNRWA Commissioner General Pierre Krahenbuhl thanked member states for their “extraordinary” support: “Today, we witnessed a powerful moment of commitment and solidarity with Palestine refugees. I am very grateful to the co-chairs for convening this important meeting and demonstrating the strength of collective action,” the website added.
 
During the meeting, UN member states reaffirmed the fundamental rights of Palestine refugees under international law and obligations of the international community. 
 
Safadi highlighted the importance for the international community to sustain the necessary assistance for UNRWA to be able to implement its duties, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.
 
Safadi also discussed with Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl the latest developments in the Syrian crisis, where he stressed the responsibility of the international community to scale up the efforts to solve the crisis in a way that preserves the unity of Syria, restores its security and stability, brings an end to the destruction and suffering.
 
The two ministers underlined the need to build on the visit of the Austrian president to the Kingdom in April 2004 and his meeting with His Majesty King Abdullah through enhancing aspects of economic cooperation and trade and investment exchange. 
 
In a meeting with Brunei’s Second Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Dato Erywan, Safadi said that Jordan is looking forward to the important visit of His Majesty Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei at the beginning of next month, which will have a great impact in strengthening relations between the two countries in all fields.
 
Safadi also held talks with Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Syarto focusing on ways to increase Jordanian exports to Hungary, especially phosphate, Dead Sea products and medicine. 
 
He voiced appreciation to the Hungarian government for increasing the number of scholarships for Jordanian students at Hungarian universities. 
 
When Safadi met with Singapore Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan, he said that the opening of the Jordanian Embassy in Singapore this year reflected the distinguished relations between Jordan and Singapore. 
 
The two sides also stressed the importance of activating the free trade agreement signed between the two countries in 2004 to achieve maximum benefit in favour of both countries.
 
He also met with his German counterpart Haikou Mas, British Minister of State for the Middle East and North Africa Alistair Burt, Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn and Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Tomislav Donchev over enhancing cooperation and regional affairs. 
 
Safadi, during various meetings, reaffirmed Jordan’s commitment alongside the international community, to continue the fight against terror.
 

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