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FM: Not signing the Eastern Mediterranean Gas Forum agreement does not mean withdrawing from it

FM: Not signing the Eastern Mediterranean Gas Forum agreement does not mean withdrawing from it
Members of the Eastern Mediterranean Gas Forum at the first meeting.

RAMALLAH, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 (WAFA) – Not participating in the signing ceremony yesterday of the agreement to launch the Eastern Mediterranean Gas Forum (EMGF) does not mean withdrawing from the forum, which Palestine has participated in its establishment, today said Omar Awadallah, the head of the United Nations General Administration and its Specialized Organizations at the Foreign Ministry.

He told Voice of Palestine radio that the State of Palestine is committed to the EMGF, which includes, in addition to Palestine, Jordan, Egypt, Israel, Greece, Italy and Cyprus, and that the signing can take place at any time, explaining that Israel tried to take advantage of this forum by stripping Palestine of the title of "state" and calling it a "Palestinian authority."

Awadallah indicated that Palestine was the one that worked on establishing this forum because it has a direct interest in it, especially since Palestine has a large area in the strategic region in the Gaza Strip where gas is found, which will return to the region part of the rights that were taken away from it, including Palestine's right to the gas.

He said that the Palestinian leadership decided that this is not the time to be present at this festive event for many reasons and that this agreement should not be signed at the present time, noting that the State of Palestine is keen and it is a national strategy to join all international and regional organizations.

He said that Palestine is going to hold meetings with a number of member states in the forum and that what governs this agreement and the establishment of the forum are United Nations resolutions, including the Law of the Sea Convention and international laws that protect Palestine's rights to the gas.

T.R./M.K.

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