Abbas says PA to start issuing 'State of Palestine' passports in 2016

Abbas says he will "no longer accept from anybody to use the name Palestinian Authority,"

By REUTERS
December 21, 2015 22:05
1 minute read.

Mahmoud Abbas: 'State of Palestine' passports to be issued in 2016

Mahmoud Abbas: 'State of Palestine' passports to be issued in 2016

 
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Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said in Athens on Monday that his national authority was going to issue State of Palestine passports within 2016.

"Regarding the issue of a passport under the name Palestine State, we are about to proceed to the passport replacement and the issuance of a new passport within one year or even less. We have already changed all documents issued by ministries and public services and they now bear the name 'State of Palestine'. We no longer accept from anybody to use the name Palestinian Authority," Abbas told a joint news conference after meeting with Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras.

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Abbas is on a two-day official visit in Athens during which the Greek parliament is set to recognize the "state of Palestine" in a non-binding parliamentary vote planned for Tuesday.

However, the recognition will not be by the Greek state, in order "not to disturb good relations with Israel," according to a statement released by the Greek foreign ministry.

"We must underline the imperative need to begin a substantial, a credible peace process but with a clear political target. A process that will give again hope to the Palestinian people, but also to the Israeli people, for a better future, for a peaceful coexistence of two peoples in the same region," the Greek premier said.

The two-state solution of an independent Palestinian state existing side-by-side with Israel has been the broad objective of negotiations since the mid-1970s and the overriding focus of US-led diplomacy for the past 20 years.

However a survey released in September by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research, showed that nearly 54 percent of Palestinians oppose a two-state solution and 60% of those polled support an armed intifada.


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