Ambassador Yussef Dorkhom: "Greece can play a mediating role in Palestinian issue"

Palestinian Ambassador Yussef Dorkhom Dorkhom

Palestinian Ambassador to Greece Yussef Dorkhom, at a press briefing held at the embassy on Wednesday, said Greece "can play a very important mediating role" since it is a friend of both Palestine and Israel.

The ambassador stressed that Greece "always retained a balanced stance in international relations," and "we are looking forward to its positive role."

Moreover, Greece "has always supported the two-state solution and the right of the Palestinian people to found their independent state on territory defined in 1967, with East Jerusalem as the capital."

Historically, he said, Greece supports International Law.

The Palestinian diplomat condemned the bombing of a hospital in Gaza Strip on Tuesday night, and observed that all attempts to peace seemed to have stopped after this fatal event.

He also denied Israel's claim that the hospital was hit by a ricocheted missile, saying the related video Israel attributes to Al Jazeera was later removed from all official Israeli accounts following an investigation by the New York Times.

Asked whether he considers Hamas a terrorist organization, the ambassador replied that the only legal representative of the Palestinian people is the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), and PLO is fully bound by all international agreements and International Law.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis stressed his grave concern over the latest developments in the Middle East during a meeting with President of the Hellenic Republic Katerina Sakellaropoulou on Thursday.

"Now that the elections are over, our attention turns once more to current affairs, at home and abroad. I do not need to tell you how concerned we are over the developments in the Middle East and, unfortunately, over this escalation in the conflict whose primary victims are civilians on both sides after the horrific, lethal attack within Israel by Hamas. Unfortunately, we also have significant loss of human lives in the Gaza Strip," Mitsotakis said.

The prime minister noted that in all his international contacts he has stressed Israel's right to self defence, on the one hand, and the need for this to be done while fully respecting the rules of international law and with absolute respect for the protection of human life in the Gaza Strip.

"It is extremely important to restore humanitarian aid to Gaza from Egypt. The European countries are working in this direction and support this policy," he said, while adding that he will have the opportunity to relay Greece's views on this when he attends a multilateral conference in Cairo on Saturday.

Mitsotakis said that Greece has striven and earned its role as a pillar of stability in the region and is an interlocutor of all sides, as well as the first country to desire a de-escalation of the tension.

Turning to domestic issues, Mitsotakis said that the government continues to insist on its reform agenda and that the cabinet meeting on Wednesday took important steps, resolving outstanding issues from the past and dealing with new challenges, with emphasis on improving the functioning of the state.

The premier also referred to the creation of a new advisory committee on Artificial Intelligence chaired by Prof. Constantine Daskalakis, noting that AI opens up new horizons, as well as a series of potential threats that must be addressed.

President Sakellaropoulou, on her part, congratulated those elected to office in local government or who participated in the elections, urging them to now work with central government to ensure "the best possible planning for the future."

Regarding international affairs, she said that the new eruption of violence in the Middle East, following the great crisis in Ukraine, was "exceptionally worrying" and that the situation showed no prospects for a positive outcome.

She stressed that the humanitarian angle was paramount and human life was above all, expressing hope that there will soon be peace.

Finally, she welcomed the government's initiative for an advisory committee on AI.

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