VANUATU TO ASSIST PALESTINIAN INDEPENDENCE

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PORT VILA, Vanuatu (April 7, 1999 - PACNEWS)---Vanuatu has indicated it will continue to support efforts to establish an independent State of Palestine.

Prime Minister Donald Kalpokas spoke of Vanuatu’s support during a Port Vila meeting with Palestinian Ambassador Ali Kazak. The Canberra-based Ambassador has been accredited to Vanuatu for ten years.

Kalpokas said Vanuatu would provide assistance at international forums where the Oslo Peace Agreement, governing relations between Palestine and Israel, is discussed.

Ambassador Kazak briefed Prime Minister Kalpokas on the agreement, noting that it terminates May 5. Kazak said 125 countries had already recognized the State of Palestine.

The Prime Minister said the Ambassador's briefing was helpful and assured Kazak that the Vanuatu Government sympathized with the Palestinian cause.

Vanuatu has diplomatic relations with both Israel and Palestine.

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