PM Modi to skip Palestine while he visits Israel

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Modi is expected to visit Israel on his way back to India from the G20 summit in Hamburg in the second week of July.

Contrary to expectations that Modi would include Palestine in his itinerary too, like many ministers did in the past, he will be travelling only to Israel.
Acknowledging the fact that Modi and his government have been much more open about New Delhi’s engagement with Tel Aviv, Israel’s ambassador to India Daniel Carmon told a leading newspaper on Thursday that “high visibility” to ties was leading to more activities between the two nations. In a departure from past policy, the NDA government has looked to bifurcate its relations with Israel and Palestine.
It was Union home minister Rajnath Singh who first broke from the practice of clubbing high-level visits to the countries by not travelling to Palestine when he visited Israel in 2014. However, President Pranab Mukherjee in 2015 and foreign minister Sushma Swaraj a year later visited both.
Modi is expected to visit Israelwill come two years after it was first announced by Swaraj. The government has used this period to intensify engagement with the Arab world to dispel the notion that under Modi, there might be a shift in India’s Israel-Palestine policy.
Ambassador Alhaija had reacted to India’s decision by describing it as shocking. A newspaper had quoted him as saying that India’s departure from its “traditional position” was the fallout of its burgeoning military ties with Israel.
Political experts believe that traditionally India and Palestine had enjoyed good relations in the past, as its importance was stressed by Mahatma Gandhi who had opposed the Israel and stood firm for Palestinian’s rights.

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