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Japan reiterates support to two-state solution

By Khetam Malkawi - Mar 08,2017 - Last updated at Mar 08,2017

TOKYO — Japan will not change its policies towards the Middle East and will continue supporting the two-state solution in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, a Japanese official has said.

Tomoaki Yamaski — of the second Middle East division, Middle Eastern and African Affairs bureau at the Japanese foreign ministry — said his country is aware of the importance of stability in the Middle East, and the international community has to address the unstable situation in some of the region’s countries.

He added that regardless of US President Donald Trump’s recent statement about the Palestinian-Israeli issue, Japan is one of the countries that has supported and continues to support the two-state solution to end the conflict.

In a recent meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Trump urged Netanyahu to curb settlement activity in the occupied West Bank, but avoided any explicit endorsement of a two-state solution to the -Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

“We do not have any plan to change” the country’s policy, Yamaski said during a recent media tour of the ministry organised by the Japan Foundation.

He added that relations between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Trump are “really strong”, and Abe “has a great asset to say something to Trump to change his policy towards the Middle East”.

Yamaski explained that Japan has been supporting the two-state solution since 1993.

According to the ministry’s figures, Tokyo funded the “corridor for peace and prosperity” initiative with $1.7 billion, which realised the establishment of the Jericho Agricultural Industrial Park in 2015. 

With respect to other issues in the region, such as the Syrian conflict, Japan, since 2011, has supported neighbouring countries affected by the crisis including Jordan with $1.6 billion.

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