Ramallah, West Bank – Hungarian President Laszlo
Solyom met President of the Palestinian National Authority Mahmoud
Abbas for talks in Ramallah in the West Bank on Wednesday.
The meeting took place as part of the Hungarian president’s
five-day official visit to Israel which is to end on Friday.
Speaking at a joint press conference with Abbas, Solyom said
that Hungary was ready to contribute to the settlement of the
Israeli-Palestinian conflict via help to promote a social
reconciliation rather than through mediation.
Referring to the forms of contribution, Solyom mentioned
proposals for projects to promote democracy, including ties between
Israeli and Palestinian scientists within the frame of the World
Science Forum and camps for Israeli and Palestinian children.
Abbas welcomed the Hungarian initiatives, noting that Budapest
had hosted the first Israeli-Palestinian meeting thirty years ago.
In response to a question by the local media, Solyom reiterated
that Israel, as any other state, has its right to self-defence but
this right can only be exercised with respect for international law
and the protection of civilian lives. "This is the position of
Hungary and the European Union," he said.
Abbas called the recent Israeli actions in Gaza incompatible
with the Annapolis process but added that there would be no
alternative to negotiations. "The present military actions are only
serving the interests of the enemies of peace," he said.