Photo taken on April 7, 2021 shows the China-funded solar energy panels installed at a children's hospital in Gaza city. (Photo by Rizek Abdeljawad/Xinhua)
China has long been a pivotal and balanced country committed to international resolutions regarding the Palestinian question and the Palestinian people's rights.
BEIJING, June 16 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping met with visiting Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Beijing on Wednesday, where both announced a strategic partnership between China and Palestine.
Abbas, who kicked off his four-day state visit to China on Tuesday, is the first Arab head of state hosted by China this year.
During their meeting on Wednesday, Xi put forward a three-point proposal for the settlement of the Palestinian question and voiced China's support for Palestine in becoming a full member state of the United Nations. He said China stands ready to play a positive role in assisting Palestine in achieving internal reconciliation and promoting peace talks.
This year marks the 35th anniversary of establishing diplomatic relations between China and Palestine. China is among the first countries to recognize the Palestine Liberation Organization and the State of Palestine.
China has all along firmly supported the Palestinian people's just cause of restoring their legitimate national rights and worked for a comprehensive, just and durable solution to the Palestinian question at an early date, Xi said on Wednesday.
Workers transfer Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccines in Salem village, east of the West Bank city of Nablus, March 29, 2021. China handed over a batch of donated Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccines to Palestine to support its nationwide fight against the pandemic. (Photo by Ayman Nobani/Xinhua)
Underscoring the significance of the meeting between the two leaders, Sun Degang, director of Center for Middle Eastern Studies at China's Fudan University, said China carried out the head of state diplomacy with Palestine in an effort to promote peace and development in the Middle East.
If peace between Palestine and Israel cannot be reached, the Middle East will not have sustainable peace, and regional reconciliation will be gravely jeopardized, he said.
Because of significant disagreements over security, Israeli settlement expansion and establishing a Palestinian state on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital, U.S.-sponsored peace negotiations between Israel and Palestine have stalled since March 2014.
"After years of marginalization and the Israeli government's refusal to sit at the negotiating table to revive the peace process, the Palestinians are looking for a different approach from the international community towards finding a serious and quick solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict," said Mazen Shamieh, former assistant minister for the Palestinian Foreign Ministry.
Strengthening ties with China will help Palestinians internationalize and mobilize more support for their cause, Shamieh said.
FREQUENT HIGH-LEVEL EXCHANGES
China and Palestine are good friends and good partners who trust and support each other, Xi said on Wednesday.
Over the past several years, high-level exchanges between China and Palestine have been frequent.
For 10 consecutive years, Xi has sent congratulatory messages to the special commemorative meeting in observance of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, and more than once he put forward China's proposals for resolving the Palestinian question, stressing the need to resolutely advance a political settlement based on the two-state solution and intensify international efforts for peace.
In July 2017, Abbas awarded the highest Palestinian medal to Xi for China's support for the just cause of Palestine and to pay homage to Xi himself.
This week's visit by Abbas is the Palestinian leader's fifth to China. The Palestinian leader also met Xi during the first China-Arab States Summit held in the Saudi capital of Riyadh in December last year.
In addition to high-level exchanges, China has often spoken up for Palestine, championed justice, and provided assistance to help ease humanitarian difficulties and reconstruction in Palestine.
Over the past years, China has completed dozens of assistance projects in Palestine, helping the latter build schools and roads. After the outbreak of COVID-19, China sent medical personnel and vaccines to Palestine to aid in the fight against the pandemic. China also frequently donated to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East.
A Chinese teacher speaks with Palestinian students in the Confucius Institute at Al-Quds University in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Feb. 22, 2020. (Photo by Ayman Nobani/Xinhua)
Palestine, meanwhile, has adhered to the one-China principle and supported China's position on issues concerning its core interests.
Ahmed Rafiq Awad, a Ramallah-based political analyst, told Xinhua that China has long been a pivotal and balanced country committed to international resolutions regarding the Palestinian question and the Palestinian people's rights.
China has firmly supported Palestinian causes at the United Nations and provided selfless support to the Palestinian people, said Abbas Zaki, a Palestinian Fatah Central Committee member and commissioner for relations with Arab countries and China.■