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India's Modi to make 'historic visit' to occupied Palestinian territories

Modi's visit will be the first ever by an Indian premier to Palestine. [Getty]

Date of publication: 29 January, 2018

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Majdi Khaldi, an adviser to President Mahmoud Abbas, told the Voice of Palestine on Monday that the visit will take place on 10 February, with Modi coming to Ramallah.

India's Prime Minister Narenda Modi will make a historic visit to the West Bank next month in the first ever trip by an Indian premier to the Israeli-occupied territory.

Majdi Khaldi, an adviser to President Mahmoud Abbas, told the Voice of Palestine on Monday that the visit will take place on 10 February, with Modi coming to Ramallah.

The visit will come just weeks after Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was warmly welcomed in India during a six-day visit.

During Netanyahu's trip, the two signed a series of agreements on oil, gas, renewable energy and cyber security as well as pledging to boost bilateral trade and investment.

India has developed warm relations with Israel in recent years, having previously been a leading country in the nonaligned movement and a vocal supporter of the Palestinians.

Khaldi said "this is the first Indian PM to visit the Palestinian territories and it is going to be historical".

Since Modi's Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party stormed to power in 2014, India has undergone a huge military modernisation program worth more than $100 billion - and Israel has been a key player.

India is now Israel's biggest arms market, buying weapons at an average of $1 billion each year.

Agencies contributed to this report.

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