Bern, 13 June 2022 (TDI): Prime Minister of Palestine Mohammad Shtayyeh met with Ambassador Maya Tissafi, Head of the MENA division of Switzerland at the foreign office in Bern.
The major agenda of the meeting was to discuss the latest political & economic developments in both countries.
Both agreed to promote bilateral relations in various fields in line with the priorities of the Palestinian government & its development plan.
The Prime Minister of Palestine also called on Switzerland to recognize the State of Palestine.
He also stressed the importance of protecting the two-state solution amidst continued Israeli policies that aim to destroy every opportunity towards the embodiment of an independent and sovereign State of Palestine.
Although Switzerland does not recognize Palestine as a state at the bilateral level, it has maintained relations with the Palestinian Authority since the first Oslo Accord was signed in 1993.
On 14 October 2020, the federal council of Switzerland adopted the specific strategy for the Middle East and North Africa region known as MENA strategy.
Switzerland’s priorities in the occupied Palestinian territory
The MENA Strategy identifies the following priorities for Switzerland in the occupied Palestinian territory:
1. Peace, security, and human rights: Switzerland offers its good offices for Israeli-Palestinian dialogue and an intra-Palestinian dialogue.
Although, it also aims to improve the rule of law, governance, and respect for international law through well-functioning Palestinian institutions.
2. Migration and protection of people in need: Switzerland assists local authorities in providing essential services to communities in need, for example, water supply services in the Gaza Strip.
In meeting the food and education needs of Palestinian refugees. A new cooperation program for the period 2021–24 is currently being drawn up and will be published shortly.
3. Sustainable development: Switzerland is also committed to increasing communities’ resilience to reduce their dependence on humanitarian aid.
4. Digitalisation and new technologies: Switzerland seeks to work with the private sector to create prospects, jobs, and income opportunities for young people, primarily in the new technologies sector.