Israel Prime Ministers Benjamin Netanyahu (left) and PM Narendra Modi. (PTI)
New Delhi: India on Friday "welcomed the full normalisation of relations between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel" and pointed out that both nations are its "key strategic partners", just hours after the UAE Foreign Minister called up External Affairs Minister (EAM) S. Jaishankar to brief him on the fast-paced developments. The move by the UAE to discuss the matter with India shows the strategic proximity that New Delhi now enjoys with the influential Gulf nation.
But in what is being seen as part of a balancing act between Israel and the Palestinians, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said India "also continues its traditional support for the Palestinian cause" and "hopes to see early resumption of direct negotiations to find an acceptable two-state solution" (Israel and Palestine).
India has close strategic ties with Israel which have been a key defence platform and equipment supplier to New Delhi over the past more than 15 years. India has also developed very close strategic ties with the UAE, especially in the past few years during the tenure of the Narendra Modi Government.
In a statement, the MEA said, "The EAM received a call this afternoon from the UAE Foreign Minister on the announcement yesterday of the full normalisation of relations between UAE and Israel. India has consistently supported peace, stability and development in West Asia, which is its extended neighbourhood. In that context, we welcome the full normalisation of ties between UAE and Israel. Both nations are key strategic partners of India."
The MEA added, "India continues its traditional support for the Palestinian cause. We hope to see early resumption of direct negotiations to find an acceptable two-state solution."