Chilean President Sebastian Pinera has reiterated his country’s support for the recognition of the independent state of Palestine during his first official visit to the Palestinian territories.
“Now Palestine has its embassy in Chile and we believe that an independent Palestinian state is a must,” Pinera said during a press conference with Acting Palestinian Authority (PA) Chief Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, West Bank on Saturday, a Press TV correspondent reported.
“We have always believed in the justice of the cause to establish a Palestinian state that can accept all of its sons in one free, sovereign nation, where people can live in peace and prosperity with their neighbors,” he added.
Earlier this year, Chile joined other South American countries including Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia and Ecuador to formally recognize Palestine as an independent state.
During the visit, Pinera also discussed with Abbas the stalled Palestinian-Israeli negotiations that collapsed last year after the Israeli regime refused to extend a partial moratorium on illegal settlement activities in the West Bank.
During the press conference, Abbas also said that he would reject an Israeli peace plan offering temporary borders for a future Palestinian independent state.
"We are aware of an old plan of a state with provisional borders, and if this plan was presented again we will not accept it," said Abbas in a sign of the deep mistrust between Palestinian and Israeli officials.
Pinera is expected to hold talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli President Shimon Peres on the last day of his four-day visit to the region.
The failure of the Middle East talks prompted the PA to launch a diplomatic initiative to secure widespread international recognition for their state, with the aim of securing UN recognition in September.
But Tel Aviv has rejected such a move, claiming that a Palestinian state should only be established through bilateral negotiations.
The latest round of talks collapsed in late September after Tel Aviv refused to extend a partial freeze on its illegal settlement construction in the occupied Palestinian territories.
Palestinians seek a state in the Gaza Strip, West Bank and East al-Quds — territories Israel seized during the 1967 war.