Ramallah: The Hangzhou Asian Games is a grand reunion of the “Asian family,” and Palestine will actively participate in it, a senior Palestinian official has said.
In an interview with Xinhua, Jibril Rajoub, secretary-general of the Central Committee of the Palestinian National Liberation Movement (Fatah), praised China’s rich experience in hosting world sports competitions and its excellent preparation and organization work.
“Participating in the Asian Games in China is a ‘happy moment’ for Palestinian athletes, which will inspire them to achieve excellent results,” said Rajoub, who is also head of the Palestinian Supreme Council for Youth and Sports.
The Palestinian delegation, made up of more than 100 athletes, will compete in 16 games, the Palestinian official said, noting that the Hangzhou Asian Games is “a landmark event” in the history of Palestinian sports.
Describing Hangzhou, the host city in eastern China, as an ancient and beautiful city with a unique architectural style and profound cultural heritage, Rajoub said the games will further promote sports and cultural exchanges among Asian countries and regions, and enhance friendship among Asian people.
Rajoub also said China and Palestine have established “extremely good” cooperation in sports, and thanked China for its support for the development of Palestinian sports.
He expressed the hope that his visit to China will further strengthen sports cooperation between the two sides.
This year marks the 35th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Palestine, said Rajoub, noting that the visit of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to China earlier this year is a new milestone in the bilateral relations.
Speaking highly of China’s consistent position in supporting the just cause of the Palestinian people, Rajoub thanked China for its support to the Palestinian people at the United Nations and other levels.
He welcomed China’s active role in promoting internal reconciliation and peace talks in Palestine, adding that ending division and achieving reconciliation are the “common aspiration” of the Palestinian people.
Rajoub said that China’s successful brokering of a historic reconciliation between Saudi Arabia and Iran in March showed its growing influence in regional and international affairs, noting that Palestine and other Middle Eastern countries need to strengthen cooperation with China to get rid of the Western influence and enhance strategic autonomy.
Moreover, the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative provides an important platform for China-Palestine and China-Arab cooperation, and enhances the development and stability in the Middle East, he said, adding that Palestine and other Arab countries are willing to join hands with China for a better future.